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Fatal Traffic Crash - Highway 18 west of Grand Ronde
Lieutenant Gregg Hastings
Public Information Officer
(503) 731-3020 ext. 247

Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers are continuing the investigation into Wednesday afternoon's single vehicle fatal traffic crash along Highway 18 about eight miles west of Grand Ronde that resulted in the death of an adult male and serious injuries to an adult female.
On September 28, 2011 at approximately 4:50 p.m. a 1994 Mitsubishi 3000GT driven by JESSE ALAN GASKIN, age 26, from Milwaukie, was eastbound on Highway 18 near milepost 13 negotiating a left curve at a high rate of speed when it traveled off the right shoulder and crashed into a tree. The initial impact split the vehicle in two sections with the front portion coming to rest on the north side of the highway. The passenger compartment and rear section came to rest overturned on its top about 40 feet south of the highway partially submerged in the Salmon River.
An OSP sergeant, who was trying to catch up to the Mitsubishi after noting its speed at 85 mph west of the crash scene, drove upon the scene shortly after it happened. With the help of several other people who stopped, they went down into water where the overturned section of the vehicle was and lifted it up out of the water. They then saw it was occupied by two people. The passenger, identified as JENNIFER KAYLEEN WILLIS, age 25, from Milwaukie, was conscious, but GASKIN was unconscious.
They removed the seriously injured woman from the car and she was later transported by Pac West Ambulance to Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital in Lincoln City. WILLIS was transferred by REACH air ambulance to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center with serious injuries. According to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, she is in serious condition Thursday morning.
After removing WILLIS, they continued propping the car up to keep GASKIN out of the water until firefighters from North Lincoln Fire & Rescue and medical personnel arrived. He was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Both occupants were using safety restraints. GASKIN was driving on a suspended Oregon driver license.
OSP troopers from Newport, Tillamook and McMinnville responded to the scene and are continuing the investigation.
North Lincoln Fire & Rescue, Pac West Ambulance, Polk County Sheriff's Office, and ODOT assisted at the scene. The highway was closed about five hours with a detour in place.