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Multi-Vehicle Crash, Fire Closes Interstate 84 east of The Dalles
Sergeant Pat Shortt
Oregon State Police - The Dalles
(541) 296-9646 ext. 5312

Photograph links valid 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
Interstate 84 near the John Day River was closed for approximately 7 1/2 hours Friday night after a crash involving several vehicles including three semi trucks that caught fire and burned.
According to Oregon State Police (OSP) Sergeant Pat Shortt, on November 26, 2010 at approximately 9:00 p.m. a white Nissan XTerra driven by ROSA MARTINEZ, age 21, from Walla Walla, Washington was traveling eastbound on Interstate 84 near milepost 113. Roadways in the area were extremely icy due to freezing rain. The Nissan XTerra lost control on the icy roadway, spun around and came to a stop in the slow lane of the freeway. A passenger in the white XTerra, ALEJANDRO ORTEGA-SORIANA age 27, from Mt. Vernon, New York got out of the vehicle to check on the other occupants.
An eastbound semi truck towing an empty trailer operated by CORNELL LIBURD, age 43, from Avondale, Arizona also lost control on the icy roadway and struck the white Nissan XTerra, which in turn struck ORTEGA-SORIANA. The semi truck then jackknifed, completely blocking the eastbound lanes of the freeway. A white 2000 Subaru station wagon operated by MARJORIE JACKSON, age 60, from Irrigon, was eastbound and slid into the jackknifed semi truck. JACKSON reacted quickly and was able to back her car away from the crash scene before she was struck by any other vehicles.
Two more westbound semi trucks, one of which was operated by SERGHEI BERDEU, age 32, from Sacramento, California and the other by JORGE ROMO, age 31, from Tucson, Arizona slid into the crash scene and collided with the first jackknifed semi truck operated by LIBURD. The three semi trucks came to a rest blocking the eastbound lanes of the freeway and caught fire. All three semi trucks were fully engulfed by fire and completely destroyed.
ALEJANDRO ORTEGA-SORIANA and LIBURD were transported to Mid Columbia Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. No information is available at this time regarding safety belt usage by any of those involved in the crash.
Both westbound and eastbound lanes of travel were blocked while emergency crews attempted to extinguish the burning vehicles and clear the scene of wreckage.
OSP troopers were assisted at the scene by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), the Gilliam County Sheriff's Office, the Rufus Fire Department and Sherman County Fire and Rescue.