The Portland Police Bureau added enhanced DUII patrols this past Labor Day Weekend, preventing fatalities during one of the year’s most dangerous weekends on the roadways.
A stronger economy with lower unemployment plus lower gas prices put 70 percent more Oregonians on the road in 2015 than in the previous year, with an increase in traffic fatalities. National statistics also show this trend, with traffic fatalities up 9 percent in the first six months of this year compared to the same period last year.
In August 2016, the Portland Police Bureau arrested 33 impaired drivers. During this past Labor Day weekend, officers patrolled for impaired drivers, and asked road users to be responsible and exercise caution.
Despite this year’s Labor Day DUII patrols, the Portland Police Bureau reported the following fatal Labor Day Weekend traffic accident.
FATAL CRASH INVESTIGATION UNDERWAY ON SOUTHEAST DIVISION – PEDESTRIAN DECEASED
On Sunday September 4, 2016, at 9:21 p.m., East Precinct and Traffic Division officers responded to the 12400 block of Southeast Division Street on the report that a pedestrian had been struck by a driver on Division Street.
Officers and medical personnel arrived and determined that the pedestrian was deceased.
The driver remained at the scene. The Traffic Division’s Major Crash Team responded to conduct an investigation. Southeast Division Street was closed in both directions from 122nd to 125th Avenues for several hours.
Early Monday morning, Traffic Division investigators booked the driver into the Multnomah County Jail on charges of Manslaughter in the Second Degree, Driving under the Influence of Intoxicants (DUII) and Reckless Driving. The driver was arraigned on Tuesday in Multnomah County Court. According to the investigation, the pedestrian was crossing Division Street, from the South to the North when he was struck by the driver, who was driving westbound on Division at a high rate of speed. After striking the pedestrian, the driver continued west until he crashed into a concrete block at the gas station at 122nd Avenue.
Traffic officers developed probable cause to believe that the driver was intoxicated while driving and arrested him on numerous charges.
This is the 31st fatal traffic crash in 2016 in the City of Portland.
The Portland Police Bureau reminds motorists that drug-impaired driving is just as dangerous, and illegal, as alcohol-impaired driving, and asks that you:
• Use a designated driver
• Call a taxi or ride-sharing company
• Be responsible when consuming alcohol or marijuana
• Remember that buzzed driving is drunk driving
Community members can support zero tolerance for impaired driving by immediately reporting suspected impaired drivers to 9-1-1.