A two-vehicle crash Dec. 7 claimed the life of a Molalla man on Hwy. 351 at Milepost 5.5.
Around 2:20 p.m., Oregon State Police and emergency personnel responded to the report of a crash at Wallowa Lake.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a 2000 Silver Dodge Caravan, operated by Michael Paul Sprissler, 63, of Molalla, was traveling southbound when he veered across the highway into the path of a white 1996 Ford F250 pickup, operated by James Anthony Burton, 59, of Joseph. The Ford impacted the driver’s side of the Dodge and Sprissler was fatally injured and pronounced deceased at the scene. Burton was not injured.
The highway was closed for about four hours while Troopers investigated the crash scene. State patrol was assisted by the Wallowa County Sheriff’s Office, Joseph Fire and Rescue and Oregon Department of Transportation.
Speed and icy road conditions are being investigated as possible contributing factors in the crash. Investigation continues and more information will be released when available.
State patrol reminds drivers that winter conditions are now upon us and to travel with extreme care. Slow down and watch for ice in shaded areas. Check the emergency equipment in your vehicles including the safety equipment needed such as chains and snow tires to travel into Oregon’s snow zones.