A 63-year old Washington state man died Sunday morning after his motorcycle struck a deer along state Highway 19 west of Spray in Wheeler County, Oregon State Police reported.
According to Senior Trooper Cody Weaver, shortly before 8 a.m., a passing motorist drove upon the scene of a downed motorcycle on Highway 19 near milepost 89. A deceased man, identified by OSP Monday as Randall L. Upshaw of Lynnwood, Wash., and a dead deer were lying along the highway.
A preliminary investigation indicates the collision between Upshaw's 2005 Honda motorcycle and deer may have occurred between 7:00 a.m. and 7:56 a.m. near the center of the highway. The victim was wearing a helmet.
OSP was assisted at the scene by the Wheeler County Sheriff's Office, Spray Ambulance and ODOT.
OSP, ODOT and Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife urge drivers to be aware of the possible dangers associated with animals on or near our highways. Extra vigilance is required.
The following information may help reduce animal/vehicle incidents:
* Be attentive at all times, especially sunset to sunrise, for any potential hazard on or near the highway.
* When driving in areas that have special signs indicating the possible presence of animals/wildlife use extra caution because these signs are posted for a reason.
* Be extra careful in areas where there is a lot of vegetation next to the road or while going around curves. Wildlife near the road may not be visible.
* Remember that the presence of any type of animal/wildlife could also mean that others are nearby.
* When you see an animal/wildlife near or on the roadway, reduce your speed and try to stay in your lane. Many serious crashes are the result of drivers swerving to avoid wildlife or other obstacles and they crash into another vehicle or lose control of their own vehicle.
* When in a motor vehicle, always wear your safety belt. Even the slightest collision could result in serious injuries.
* Car-deer traffic crashes nationally are the highest in November. During the annual deer rut season, deer activity increases along with the potential for wildlife trying to cross roads.