Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into Thursday morning's pedestrian-involved fatal traffic crash on eastbound Interstate 84 in the Hood River area. The crash resulted in the death of a 48-year old Hispanic man.
According to OSP Sergeant Pat Shortt, on Jan. 20, 2011, at approximately 1:20 a.m. a 2009 White truck pulling a semi-trailer containing paper products driven by Jeff D. Rainey, 38, Washougal, was eastbound on I-84 near milepost 63. This section of interstate freeway is currently a highway work zone with eastbound traffic narrowed to one lane of travel. Conditions were dark and the area unlit.
As the commercial truck was traveling eastbound it struck Ramiro Najera-Cervantes, 48, Parkdale, as he attempted to cross the traffic lane from the south to the north side.
Najera-Cervantes climbed over a 3-foot high barrier in the highway work zone to get access into the eastbound lane before he was struck. He was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Rainey was not injured. He was driving for Gardner Trucking Inc. out of Chino, Calif.
OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing the investigation. No citations are expected to be issued to the driver. There is no evidence of alcohol as a contributing factor for the driver or pedestrian.
Hood River County Sheriff's Office, Hood River Police Department, Hood River Fire Department and ODOT assisted at the scene. The eastbound lanes were closed about three hours and diverted through Hood River before being re-opened about 4:30 a.m.
Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into Friday afternoon's fatal traffic crash on Highway 35 about 13 miles north of Bennett Pass that resulted in the death of a Parkdale-area man.
On Jan. 21, 2011, at approximately 5:55 p.m. a 2003 Kenworth truck pulling a dump trailer driven by Fred E. Jorgensen, 63, Husum, was northbound on Highway 35 near milepost 77 negotiating a curve when it came upon a 1996 Honda Accord that was traveling southbound in the northbound lane.
Jorgensen braked and steered to the left in an attempt to avoid the oncoming car but the car crashed into a right side wheel axle on the dump trailer. The impact tore away the car's passenger side before it came to rest in the northbound lane.
The truck slid to a stop along the side of the northbound lane.
Jorgensen was using safety restraints and was not injured.
The car's lone occupant/driver, Robert Steven Cupit, 63, Parkdale, was pronounced deceased at the scene. He was not using safety restraints.
OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing the investigation into the cause of the crash.
Local emergency responding agencies and ODOT assisted at the scene. The highway was closed for several hours during the investigation.
HOOD RIVER COUNTY
On Jan. 18, 2011, the sheriff's office was contacted by family members of 54-year-old Parkdale resident David Theodore Dethman.
Relatives reported they had not seen Dethman since October 2010.
From January 18-20, 2011, sheriff's office personnel searched in an effort to locate Dethman's whereabouts.
On Jan. 20, 2011, during an aerial search of the area, Sheriff Wampler, who was operating the office's airplane, spotted a body in a wooded area. The remains were located in between Toll Bridge Rd. and Baseline Rd. in Parkdale.
Ground units from the sheriff's office responded to the area and located the body of a middle aged white male. Initial observations indicated that the man had been deceased for several weeks.
An autopsy at the Oregon State Medical Examiner's office was performed on January 21, 2011. The autopsy confirmed that the remains were those of Mr. Dethman.
The cause of death is still pending an official report from the Medical Examiners Office.
An Oregon Army National Guard Blackhawk helicopter team assisted Hood River Sheriff's office in rescuing a woman stranded in Starvation Creek State Park.
The individual was airlifted from a ravine and taken to Cascade Locks to receive medical attention at approximately 9:45 p.m., January 22.
The MEDEVAC unit is based in Salem and returned from a deployment to Iraq last January. The unit spent approximately one year assisting with over 375 life saving missions, involving over 800 patients.