On Sunday, at approximately 4:33 a.m., a single vehicle rollover crash severely injured two people on Interstate 84.
The driver was identified as Justin Matthew FLOWERS, age 24, from Portland, and the passenger, Hayden Michael SWANSON, age 23, from Portland. Life Flight transported FLOWERS to Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland, Washington and SWANSON was transported by ground ambulance to Mid-Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles. During transport to the hospital, FLOWERS succumbed to his injuries. After arrival at the hospital in The Dalles, SWANSON was also transported by Life Flight to OHSU in Portland, where he is in critical but stable condition.
The investigation revealed the vehicle, a 1999 Chevy C15 SUV, had been westbound on the interstate in the early morning hours, when for an unknown reasons it left the roadway, crashed through the north side guardrail and rolled down a rock embankment, coming to rest approximately 150 feet from the roadway. Preliminary information indicates that both FLOWERS and SWANSON had not been using their seat belts at the time of the crash and were ejected from the vehicle. Speed and fatigue are being considered to be contributing factors for the crash.
Oregon State Police was assisted by Gilliam County Rural Fire Department, Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), Life flight, Richland Police Department and Benton County Washington Coroner's Office.