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Fatal Traffic Crash - Interstate 84 west of Hood River
04/29/2010
Sergeant Julie Wilcox
Oregon State Police - The Dalles
(541) 296-9646

Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into a Thursday afternoon traffic crash along Interstate 84 about 7 miles west of Hood River that turned into a fatality when the 18-year old male driver died after arriving at an area hospital.
 
On April 29, 2010 at approximately 12:35 p.m. a 2002 Chevrolet pickup driven SAMUEL ISSAC ELKINS, age 18, from Happy Valley, was westbound on Interstate 84 near milepost 55 approaching the area of the ODOT Wyeth truck weigh station. The pickup left the westbound lanes onto the weigh station access lane, continued off the pavement and into a ditch. The pickup became airborne, subsequently colliding into a tree about 40 feet from the road. An ODOT weighmaster working at the weigh station witnessed the vehicle drive off the highway.
 
ELKINS was transported by ambulance to Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital where he died after arriving. He was not using safety restraints.
 
The passenger / victim's cousin, JAKE LENARD BURKET, age 19, from southeast Portland, received a minor injury and was treated at the scene. He reportedly was asleep when the crash happened and was using safety restraints.
 
OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing the investigation.
 
Hood River County Sheriff's Office, Cascade Locks Fire Department and ODOT assisted at the scene.