Troutdale, a mere 17 miles east of Portland, in Multnomah County is widely recognized as the gateway city for the Columbia River Gorge and Mt. Hood Byway. The city is small, occupying less than six square miles and serving as home to around 16,000 people, but its location ensures that it never lacks for activity. Troutdale’s small, historic downtown features not one but two museums and its location near the Gorge makes it a popular destination for hikers, canoeists, campers and fishermen alike. In fact, the fishing in the Columbia River indirectly gave the city its name: according to tradition Troutdale was named for the home of the city’s early-19th century founder. He, in turn, chose the name to honor a trout-filled pond that was part of his property. One of Troutdale’s two museums – Harlow House – was originally the residence of the founder’s son and is included on the National Register of Historic Places.
While Troutdale’s site and history are striking, but the Columbia River’s beauty can also create complications and present dangers. Interstate 84/US Route 30 runs through Troutdale and the city’s location close to the river can lead to often-treacherous driving conditions. Semi-Trucks traveling I-84 in particular, are frequently subject to strong, gusting winds and icy conditions in winter. Indeed, of the 121 motor vehicle crashes recorded in Troutdale by the Oregon Department of Transportation in 2010, 40 – almost one-in-three – took place on wet surfaces. Thirteen of the city’s crashes involved trucks.
On one level this should not be surprising. State data also indicate that with 1,711 such accidents statewide in 2010 medium and heavy trucks were among the most common contributors to serious accidents in the state. Indeed, trucks were involved in twice as many accidents as pedestrians or motorcycles, and nearly twice as many crashes as bicycles. Moreover, December is the highest incidence month for crashes – another factor that should give caution to truckers headed through a community like Troutdale.
Matthew D. Kaplan’s downtown Portland law office at 50 SW Pine St 3rd Floor can be an essential resource for families trying to put their lives back together after being involved in an Oregon truck crash. Matthew is a passionate defender of the rights of those injured through the negligence of other persons or corporations, and will always do his best to help ordinary Oregonians obtain justice even though the odds may appear to be against them.
The Law Office of Matthew D. Kaplan is conveniently located at 50 SW Pine St 3rd Floor, Portland, OR 97204.