WHITE CITY, Ore. -- People who live near the intersection of Lakeview Drive and Highway 140 are still reeling from the fatal crash last night. The location is about a half-mile west of the more infamous Kershaw Road intersection. Still, neighbors near Lakeview say they've seen plenty of collisions.
Sergeant Jeff Proulx with OSP explains what led to the crash. "We're looking at distracted driving," says Proulx. "Obviously this car had slowed or stopped. And the operator of this Ford pickup failed to recognize that."
That distraction proved to be deadly and now a 7 year old has been killed. Judy Bennett lives just down the street from where the crash happened. She saw the aftermath and said things like it are common. "Well we have a lot of little, you know, fender benders I guess you'd call them," explains Judy. "But when it turns into fatalities, it grabs people a little more. But we've had a lot of wrecks here."
ODOT spokesperson Gary Leaming related some statistics about the intersection. "In the case of last night's tragedy at Lakeview, that has a very low crash rate over the last 10 years," he said. "There have been 9 crashes over the last decade, none of them fatal. I think what it shows is that there's engineering that can be done for traffic safety but the biggest quotient in all of that is driver attentiveness, driver error."
Still, Judy Bennett feels that something needs to be done. She'd like to see people slow down. She says it's common for drivers to misjudge the speed of oncoming traffic.
"We could limit access there," explains Leaming. "We could close all access at Lakeview. We could make a left turn pocket there at Lakeview."
These are options ODOT will be considering.
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