Wrong way driver hits ODOT snow plow

Ashland, Ore.–  Only NBC5 news captured the aftermath of a wrong way crash. An Oregon Department of Transportation plow truck is bent, damaged, and out of commission.

“Wrong way driver came right into him,” said Gary Leaming with the ODOT.

Just Tuesday night NBC5 was out on the Siskiyou Summit with Jon Zehe, he’s the driver of the plow truck. We were talking to Zehe while he was working the night shift, pouring gravel hours before Leaming and Oregon State Police said, 37-year-old Pedro Pages from Ashland was drunk and went the wrong way on northbound I-5.

Leaming said it happened at mile marker 6.5 where Zehe was going through a curve when he noticed someone heading towards him. He put up his plow thinking the driver would go around him, instead he hit the plow straight on.

“In this case he was driving a heavy pickup truck,” said Leaming.

A 2015 Ford F350 that was strong enough to protect Pages.

“16 of these bolts.” The impact sheered 16 bolts from the plow. But Leaming said that’s the least of their worries.

“Fortunately no one was hurt from this wrong way driver. Fortunately he ran into a plow instead of a family in a car or mini van going someplace for Thanksgiving.”

Pages was cited and released. ODOT is now short one of their nine plow trucks in the Ashland area. Meaning other crews will have to pick up the slack as icy conditions are expected.

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