Man hit by semi on I-84: ‘Didn’t see it, didn’t hear it until it - KPTV - FOX 12

Man hit by semi on I-84: ‘Didn’t see it, didn’t hear it until it was on top of us’

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CORBETT, OR (KPTV) -

A Portland man was driving on Interstate 84 with a friend when they ran out of gas near Corbett. As they waited inside the SUV on the westbound shoulder for help, Patrick Sheehan’s friend made an ominous comment.

“What if we got hit be a truck right now?” he said.

A few minutes later, it happened.

The SUV was hit by a semi. The collision caused the semi to crash through a guardrail and roll down an embankment into the Columbia River.

Witnesses helped get the semi driver out of the truck. Investigators said the 52-year-old woman from Quebec, Canada drifted onto the shoulder while looking in the mirror to make a lane change.

The two people in the SUV never had a chance to react.

“Didn’t see it, didn’t hear it until it was on top of us,” Sheehan said.

Police said the truck driver was seriously injured, while Sheehan and his friend sustained minor injuries.

“Everything that was in the vehicle was suspended in the air and going through the vehicle,” he said. “I swallowed glass. I picked glass out of my nose, my ears, my eyes, my hair. It’s still in my scalp today.”

Sheehan said he can’t believe they survived.

“Why are you still here? That’s what I ask myself. Obviously you’re here to do something better,” he said.

Crews are planning to remove the semi and trailer filled with oats beginning at 6 a.m. Wednesday.

ODOT reported one lane would be closed east of Corbett for about a mile for most of the day. Several intermittent full closures could take place when large pieces are being lifted onto the highway. 

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