Driver arrested after missing police car, crashing on side of I-5

Driver arrested after missing police car, crashing on side of I-5
OSP photograph

MYRTLE CREEK, Ore. -- A car almost hit a state trooper before crashing into a dirt embankment along the side of Interstate 5 Sunday morning, the second close call for troopers this weekend involving suspected drunk drivers, according to state police.

Carlos Hernandez-Angel, 30, from Seattle, Wash., was arrested on suspicion of DUII, reckless endangering and recklessly endangering another person.

Hernandez-Angel and his passenger were not injured.

Neither was Trooper Dan Wells, who had stopped a vehicle southbound on I-5 near Myrtle Creek around 6:20 a.m. 

Wells watched Hernandez-Angel's red Honda Prelude almost sideswipe the stopped patrol car, then saw the Prelude run off the road and crash into a dirt bank 150 feet away.

Wells immediately released the vehicle he had stopped and drove up to the Honda Prelude instead, arresting Hernandez-Angel.

This was the second known close call over the weekend involving a suspected DUII driver and OSP troopers on traffic stops, according to state police.

The other incident occurred south of Brookings on Highway 101. An OSP trooper standing on the passenger side of his patrol car was knocked to the ground after a DUII driver crashed into the left rear corner of the patrol car.

According to a 2008 report on law enforcement fatalities, for the 11th year in a row more officers were killed in traffic incidents – automobile and motorcycle crashes and being struck by other vehicles – than in shootings or any other cause of death, according to state police.