KLAMATH COUNTY, Ore. -- A construction flagger was killed after being struck by a car on Highway 140 east of Klamath Falls near milepost 8 last night.
Oregon State Police (OSP) said that investigation revealed 38-year-old Zahara Gonzales of Klamath Falls was driving westbound on Highway 140E as she entered a construction zone near Pine Grove Road.
Gonzales' gold Mazda struck the construction flagger, 45-year-old Daniel Wessel of Klamath Falls, who was working for Rocky Mountain Construction.
OSP said that Wessel suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. Highway 140 was closed for four hours after the crash as emergency crews responded and troopers conducted an investigation.
“One injury or fatality among our staff and contractors is one too many,” said Director Matt Garett with the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT). “Our hearts, minds, prayers and thoughts go out to this family of our fallen comrade. We will, we must do better at protecting those who put their lives on the line to enhance and maintain our vital transportation system.”
ODOT said that an investigation into the fatal crash is ongoing.
Friends of Daniel Wessel have started a GoFundMe page for his family, which has already surpassed its $10,000 goal.
Losses like Daniel's are heartbreaking. They are also preventable. Driving is a serious task. It requires preparation, vigilance, focus and clear decision-making. We ask that when you travel our roadways, that you make safe choices - always. https://t.co/zft9y4s8e7
— Oregon DOT (@OregonDOT) June 19, 2019
The family has set up a gofundme account to help his wife and five children: https://www.gofundme.com/in-memory-of-daniel-wessell
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