September 19, 2013
Lieutenant Gregg Hastings
Public Information Officer
(503) 731-3020 ext 247
Photograph links valid at least 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
Oregon State Police (OSP) is continuing the investigation into Wednesday afternoon's fatal traffic crash along Highway 38 about five miles west of Elkton that resulted in the death of a 26-year old Independence, Oregon man and non-life threatening injuries to the vehicle's driver.
On September 18, 2013 at approximately 4:32 p.m., a 1997 Ford Ranger pickup driven by JOSE RAFAEL HERNANDEZ-DIAZ, age 28, from Independence, was eastbound on Highway 38 near milepost 30. For an unconfirmed reason, the pickup traveled off the eastbound shoulder, down an embankment and collided head-on with a tree. The crash was witnessed by a Douglas County Sheriff's Office deputy who requested OSP and medical response.
HERNANDEZ-DIAZ was using safety restraints and received non-life threatening injuries. He was transported by air ambulance to Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend in Springfield.
Right front passenger JORGE ARMANDO TORRES TORRES, age 26, from Independence, was not using safety restraints. TORRES TORRES was pronounced deceased at the scene.
OSP troopers from the Coos Bay Area Command office are investigating the cause of the fatal crash. Senior Trooper Fred Dunlap is the lead investigator.
OSP was assisted by Douglas County Sheriff's Office, North Douglas County Fire & EMS, Elkton Fire Department, and ODOT.
### www.oregon.gov/OSP ###