Wrong-way driver killed in I-84 crash
May 23,2007 00:00 by Cheryl McDermott

A 28-year old Washington man was killed early Tuesday morning, one minute after a motorist called 911 to report that a pickup was driving the wrong way on Interstate 84 east of Hood River.  He collided nearly head-on with an oncoming SUV, Oregon State Police (OSP) reported.

Mathias McConville of Wapato, WA was killed early Tuesday morning when his vehicle collided with an SUV after traveling the wrong way on Intersate 84 east of Hood River, Oregon - OSP photos 
Investigators have yet to determine the cause of the crash that occurred about 4 a.m., May 22 in the westbound lanes of Interstate 84 near milepost 69.  According to an OSP news release, 28-year old Mathias McConville of Wapato, Washington was traveling east going the wrong way on the highway in a 1979 GMC pickup when he hit a 2006 GMC Yukon nearly head-on.

Troopers said the Yukon was just beginning to pass a commercial truck towing two trailers when the collision occurred, and the impact forced it into one of the trailers.

McConville, who was not wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the Yukon, 78-year old John L. Clark of Hillsboro, was transported to Legacy Emanuel Hospital with reportedly serious injuries.  Clark was using safety restraints and the GMC’s airbags deployed.

Clark’s passenger, Harley Niemi, 60, of Yacolt, Washington was transported to Hood River Providence Hospital where he was treated for minor injuries and released.  Troopers said he was wearing a seat belt.

Troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing the investigation.

Assistance at the scene was provided by Hood River County Sheriff's Office, Hood River Police Department, Wasco County Sheriff's Office and local emergency responder personnel.

Oregon Department of Transportation closed traffic lanes for over two hours during accident investigation and clean up.