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Prineville Rollover Truck Crash Seriously Injures Passenger

Date: October 10, 2009
Location: Mill Creek Road & Hwy. 26E, Prineville, Oregon
Names: Donald Ray Carter

Police say alcohol and speed were factors in an October 10, 2009, single-vehicle rollover crash that threw a passenger, Donald Ray Carter, 24, of Prineville, Oregon, from a truck, seriously injuring him.

A male juvenile from Prineville, Oregon, was driving a 1991 Chevy truck on Mill Creek Road, just north of Hwy. 26E, east of Prineville, around 11:30 PM, when he lost control of the vehicle. The truck slid across both lanes and rolled at least twice, landing about 60 feet away from the road. Carter was thrown from the cab of the truck.

When Crook County Sheriff’s deputies arrived, Carter was behind the truck, complaining of injuries. He was transported by ambulance to Pioneer Memorial Hospital in Prineville, then flown by AirLink helicopter to St. Charles Medical Center – Bend, where he was listed in critical condition. The juvenile driver received minor injuries.

Neither the driver, whose name was not released, nor Carter, was wearing a seatbelt. KTVZ.com reports that, according to authorities, alcohol and speed were apparent factors in the crash. As of October 11, no citations had been issued, and authorities continued to investigate.

Along with the Crook County Sheriff’s Office, the Oregon State Police and Crook County Fire and Rescue responded to the accident.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are up to 36 deaths and 700 injuries every day in the U.S. due to motor vehicle crashes involving an alcohol-impaired driver. The CDC reports that in 2006, 13,470 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes. This comes to almost one-third of all U.S. traffic deaths. And in 2007, more than 1.4 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence – but this is less than 1% of persons who admit to driving impaired each year. Male drivers and young people are especially likely to be involved.

It is important to understand what to do after you’ve been involved in a crash where alcohol is a factor. We hope you will never need this information, of course, but you may want to check out our fact sheet or this informative video. We encourage people to educate themselves on the law of drunk driving in Oregon, and we provide free information to help you settle your lawsuit without an attorney. But when a drunk driver is involved, the law becomes very tricky, and you should contact an experienced Portland injury attorney.