BEND, Ore. - (Update: Statement from crash victim's employer)
A Bend man was killed Wednesday morning when he tried to turn left at an intersection on Highway 20 east of Bend and was struck by an oncoming pickup truck, Oregon State Police said.
OSP and Bend Fire medics responded around 9:35 a.m. to the crash at Highway 20 and Ward/Hamby roads that blocked traffic for a time and restricted it to one lane for several hours.
A preliminary investigation found that a 2006 GMC Sierra pickup driven by Michael Deleone, 59, of Redmond was heading west on Highway 20 when an oncoming 2017 Ford Transit van driven by Mark Douglas Price, 48, of Bend turned into its path as it tried to turn left (north) onto Hamby Road, OSP Sgt. Kaipo Raiser said.
Price died at the crash scene, while Deleone was uninjured, Raiser said.
Price's van "failed to yield to oncoming traffic and is the contributing factor in this crash," the sergeant said in a news release.
The Highway 20 intersection divides Hamby Road to the north and Ward Road to the south.
Deleone is cooperating with investigators “and is not suspected in any wrongdoing,” Raiser said.
Both drivers were wearing their seat belts and the airbags deployed in the pickup, the sergeant added.
Redmond-based Advantage Dental said in a brief statement Thursday that Price had worked for the company "for close to a year now."
"We are deeply saddened by the news of his passing," the company said. "Our sincere thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends."
Highway 20 was shut down or limited to one lane of travel for nearly four hours for the crash investigation.
OSP was assisted at the scene by ODOT, Bend Fire and Rescue and the Deschutes County sheriff’s, district attorney’s and medical examiner’s offices.
No one else was in either vehicle. OSP Captain Bill Fugate said the pickup driver cooperated with investigators and was taken to St. Charles Bend for a voluntary blood draw.
Fugate also said OSP was investigating distracted driving as a factor in the crash.
ODOT spokesman Peter Murphy said it was the first fatal crash in the area in about five years. He also said new signs will be going up soon to reduce the speed limit in that area from 55 mph to 45 mph.