Flip! Crunch! Smash! …Traffic accidents abound, on sunny autumn day

See the results of three accidents – out of many more – that all took place on October 5 in East Portland …

This, the last car wreck we visit on October 5, shuts down SE Foster Road for hours while police investigate the accident.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Even Portland Police Bureau officers say they don’t know why sometimes – on a clear sunny day – vehicular accidents just seem happen, all over town. October 5 was one of those days.

In the greater Portland area, a dozen smash-ups were reported; here are the details of three in East Portland that took place within a six-hour time span.

Roll-over stalls freeway traffic

This Portland Fire & Rescue crew didn’t have to use the “Jaws of Life®” to perform a heroic rescue – but they did get busy with brooms to clear the freeway of bark dust.

A call came in at 3:45 p.m.:  An SUV – and a utility trailer – had rolled over on I-205.  It was on the northbound side of the freeway, between SE Foster Road and a point just south of the SE Holgate Boulevard overpass.

While we were en route, we heard on the emergency services radio that the driver was out and walking around – but, his trailer-load of bark dust was scattered across the roadway.

Traffic backed up to the Abernathy Bridge in Oregon City, while crews removed the wrecked SUV, the trailer – and all that bark dust.

“The driver said it ‘just got away from him’,” said a Portland Police Bureau (PPB) officer who responded to the scene.

According to PPB spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson, “There were no injuries reported, and no citations were issued.”

Child hit on residential street

Although witnesses say the car was traveling slowly as the painted text on the street suggests – but not slowly enough to avoid hitting a child who dashed out in front of a car.

At 5:39 p.m. the 9-1-1 Center took a call that send police and an ambulance to SE Rural Street near SE 74th Avenue. It’s the kind of accident police officers say they dread – an injury accident involving a child struck by a car.

“I’m aware that a lot of kids play in the street here,” said a man identified himself as a passenger in the car. “The driver was going very slowly. The child darted out from behind a pickup truck with a canopy, just in front of the car. There was no way to stop.”

Portland Fire & Rescue firefighters work with paramedics to stabilize the child who ran out from behind a parked truck – and into the path of an oncoming car.

Others who claimed to have witnessed the accident agreed that the car was, indeed, traveling slowly. “It’s terrible to see a kid hit like this,” a bystander said. “I’ve seen several near-misses. But on a narrow street like this, I wonder why kids are out playing in it.”

There are no sidewalks on this segment of outer East Portland’s SE Rural St.

Sgt. Simpson could only tell us it was a 9-year-old child who was injured. “At this point, we don’t have information about the condition of the child, or about citations being issued.”

Allegedly tipsy speed demon
cheats death on Foster Rd.

Looking at the condition of this car, it’s no wonder officers who arrived first at this wreck didn’t expect that the driver would had survived the crash.

At 9:15 p.m., emergency first responders were called to the scene of a one-car crash on SE Foster Road, near SE 107th Avenue.

Based on their initial radio description of the smash-up, police first believed that the driver didn’t survive the horrific crash that destroyed the front and side of the car.

This car, said to have been doing in excess of 100 mph, came to a sudden stop after skidding into this wooden utility pole. The pole sustained little damage; the driver didn’t fare as well.

By the time we arrived, the driver of the car had been extricated and taken off by ambulance. District and Traffic Division officers worked taking measurements, and writing reports.

“The car was traveling over 100 mph just prior to accident,” said Sgt. Simpson, after checking the reports. “24-year-old Vasily Pogorelov charged with DUII.”

Drive safely!

© 2010 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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