COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. - A truck driver lost control on Interstate 5 and crashed in the center concrete barrier, pushing sections of the barrier into oncoming traffic Wednesday night, Oregon State Police said.
Four vehicles hit the barriers, and a pickup truck hit a commercial truck driver who stopped to try to warn other motorists, according to police.
That man - identified as David Solheim, 55, of Myrtle Creek - suffered serious injuries, police said. Solheim was in serious condition at Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend on Friday morning, according to hospital staff.
Solheim was one of 5 people taken to RiverBend with inuries ranging from minor to serious, state police said.
The initial crash happened just before 8 p.m. on I-5 south of Cottage Grove.
The investigation found Amarveer Dahliwal, 45, of Everett, Wash., lost control of the trailer on his commercial motor vehicle, police said. The trailer "struck the outside guardrail, the driver then overcorrected, crossed both southbound travel lanes and struck the center concrete barrier," state police said in a report. "The collision with the barrier dislodged several large concrete sections, forcing them into the northbound travel lanes."
That's when Solheim stopped at the crash scene and got out of his vehicle in an attempt to warn other drivers, police said.
A southbound Dodge pickup driven by Decontee Renda, 23, hit Solheim, police said.
Meanwhile, four vehicles hit the concrete barriers in the northbound lanes of I-5.
Police identified the drivers as Bobby Carter, 47, of Springfield; Michelle Nickell, 57, of Cottage Grove; Adam Castro, 52, of Springfield; and Kelly Gregory, 43, from Portage, Michigan.
The crashes blocked both the northbound and southbound lanes, police said. The Oregon Department of Transportation managed to open one lane of travel in both directions in under two hours, police said, "allowing tow operators on scene to remove the vehicles."