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Fatal Traffic Crash - Highway 126W east of Florence
Sergeant Ron Martin
Oregon State Police - Florence
Office: (541) 997-9635

Photograph link valid for 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
A 49-year old Albany man died Saturday afternoon from injuries suffered in a head-on collision about 16 miles east of Florence on Highway 126W.
According to Oregon State Police Sergeant Ron Martin, on May 17, 2008 at 2:07 p.m. a Ford Ranger pickup driven by GREGG ALLEN RUDZIK, age 49, from Albany, was traveling eastbound on Highway 126W when the operator failed to negotiate a slight right hand curve in the roadway and crossed into the westbound lane of travel where it crashed into a 2002 Pontiac operated by GUY CORAM, age 46, of Corvallis. After the initial impact, the pickup then collided head-on into a 2004 Chevy pickup towing a 31-foot 5th wheel travel trailer.
RUDZIK was pronounced deceased at the scene. He was not wearing a seatbelt.
The Chevrolet pickup's driver, JESS BLAIR, age 34, from Salem, and his two-year old son were transported to Peace Harbor Hospital in Florence with minor injuries.
CORAM was not injured.
Shortly after the crash the Ford Ranger caught fire and was destroyed. Due to the quick reaction of passing citizens, another castrophy was avoided as the crash caused a propane leak on the travel trailer directly next to the fire. Citizens hooked a chain to the burning vehicle and dragged it away from the trailer.
Oregon State Police troopers from the Florence worksite are continuing the investigation.
Highway 126W was closed for approximately 4 hours while the scene was investigated. OSP was assisted at the scene by Lane County Sheriff's Office, ODOT, Siuslaw Fire and Mapleton Fire departments.