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Accident North of Grants Pass Kills Boy, Injures Two Others


Date: June 24, 2011
Location: Milepost 70, Interstate 5, 12 miles north of Grants Pass

A 9-year-old boy was killed and two other children injured, one seriously, in a three-vehicle crash Friday afternoon on Interstate 5. The accident happened around 4:45 in the afternoon, near milepost 70, about 12 miles north of Grants Pass, when the young victim was partially ejected from a car in which he was a passenger.

Oregon State Police Sergeant Jeff Fitzgerald reported that a northbound 2001 GMC Yukon being driven by a 29-year-old of Woodland Hills, California, was attempting to pass a 1997 Holiday Rambler motor home. Before completing the overtaking maneuver however, the GMC Yukon went out of control and collided twice with the motor home, as well as crashing into a Honda CRV being towed behind the motor home, causing the Honda to detach from the motor home. The GMC Yukon then left the highway, traveled up the embankment before rolling back down and coming to a halt on the right shoulder of I-5.

The driver of the motor home, a 66-year-old, is a retired firefighter from Arroyo Grande, California. He carried out emergency medical procedures until Rural Metro Fire Department paramedics and an AMR ambulance crew arrived on the scene, but despite all their efforts, the young boy was pronounced dead at the crash scene. The driver and two other children passengers in the GMC Yukon, aged three and one, were taken to Three Rivers Community Hospital in Grants Pass. The driver and the one-year-old were treated for minor injuries and then released. The three-year-old was treated for serious injuries, then transported by air ambulance to Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland. The driver of the motor home and three other passengers in the motor home, ages 60, 34 and 16, were not injured.

Our deepest sympathy goes out to young child’s family and friends after this tragic accident, and we would also like to wish young child, recovering in Portland, a full and speedy recovery.

While accidents like this one can seem black or white, a closer investigation will sometimes turn up a surprise. Many will assume that the driver of the GMC Yukon stopped paying attention or temporarily lost control of her vehicle for some other reason. And perhaps that is exactly what happened. But there are many other possibilities as well. Maybe the car was recently brought in for a tune-up, and the mechanic replaced the steering mechanism carelessly, and the car lost steering. Perhaps a tire was defective and blew out, causing the sudden loss of control that led to the collision. These things happen, and when someone is seriously injured or tragically killed, a competent Portland car accident attorney can investigate and find out what happened. Usually at no cost. For more information on what to do in the case of an Oregon accident, contact our office or read 7 Common Mistakes That Can Wreck Your Oregon Accident Case.