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Police: 15-year-old driver killed in crash in SE Oregon

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"Distracted driving is being investigated as a possible contributing factor," state police said. "Initial investigation indicates the juveniles did not have permission to be operating the vehicle." (OSP photo)

BURNS, Ore. - A 15-year-old boy died when he lost control of the pickup he was driving on Highway 78 in southeastern Oregon on Thursday night, Oregon State Police.

A 14-year-old male passenger suffered critical injuries. He was taken by helicopter to Oregon Health & Sciences University in Portland.

A 10-year-old boy in the back seat of the pickup was taken to a hospital in Bend by ambulance and is expected to survive. The driver killed in the crash was his older brother, police said.

The identities of the boys are not yet known.

The crash happened around 7 p.m. between Burns and Crane.

Police said the 1995 Nissan pickup drifted off the shoulder of the highway. The driver over-corrected, causing the pickup to overturn and roll on the highway.

The crash ejected all 3 boys from the pickup. The boys were not wearing seat belts, police said.

"Distracted driving is being investigated as a possible contributing factor," state police said. "Initial investigation indicates the juveniles did not have permission to be operating the vehicle."