7 People Critically Injured in Christmas Day Crash Near Hermiston

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An investigation into a multi-vehicle crash near Hermiston on Christmas day continues after nine people were hospitalized and seven critically injured.

At approximately 5 p.m. on Monday, Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office Regional Dispatch Center received reports of a crash involving multiple vehicles on Umatilla River Road near Cooney Lane, outside of Hermiston.

Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office and Umatilla County Fire District #1 were initially dispatched. Upon arrival, UCFD#1 immediately requested additional resources for a Mass Casualty Incident.

Oregon State Police, Hermiston Police Department, Umatilla Police Department and Stanfield Police Department all responded to the accident. Multiple medical and fire personnel responded and worked to triage, extricate, and treat a total of nine patients. Seven were critically injured, including two patients under the age of 10. Patients were transported to both Kadlec Medical Center in Richland, Wash., and Good Shepherd Medical Center in Hermiston.

The preliminary investigation indicated three vehicles were involved. Vehicle #1 was traveling southbound on Umatilla River Road and struck vehicle #2, which was heading northbound at a high rate of speed. After the initial crash, vehicle #3, also traveling southbound, struck vehicle #2 while attempting to avoid vehicle #1.

At this time in the investigation, the driver of vehicle #1 is suspected of being impaired.

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