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Intersection claims another wreck
Sunset Drive, Bypass wreck2.jpg
A motor vehicle wreck that left this Chevy Tahoe on its top and its driver transported for medical treatment is still under investigation. The incident occurred at the intersection of Sunset Drive and Highway 70S Bypass on Sunday night. - photo by Lisa Hobbs

Another high-speed collision occurred at the intersection of Sunset Drive and the bypass on Sunday, leaving one vehicle on its top.

The driver of the flipped 2010 Chevy Tahoe, Francisco R. Cordon Orellana, was traveling outbound and attempting to take a left turn onto Sunset Drive when he was struck by a 2015 Jeep Wrangler driven by John D. Black, who was traveling inbound on the bypass.

“I’ve spoken to the driver of the Jeep, Mr. Black,” said McMinnville police lieutenant Mark Mara. “He said he had the yellow light. He felt it was too late to stop so he went through it. It was raining so he left like he’d slide if he attempted to stop. I haven’t spoken to the driver of the Tahoe yet.”

After the initial impact, the Tahoe flipped and struck the front of a 1998 Chevy Silverado.

“The Silverado was driven by Damon V. Wilcher,” said Mara. “He was stopped on Sunset Drive and waiting for a green light.”

At this time, wrongdoing has not been assigned.

“Citations are pending,” said Mara. “I’m continuing to gather information. I still need to speak to the driver of the Tahoe. I’m also trying to determine any contributing factors were involved in the crash. It was dark by that time and raining. Blood was drawn from both drivers to determine if alcohol or drugs were involved. Those results will take three to six months.”

According to McMinnville Police Chief Bryan Denton, the intersection of Sunset Drive and the bypass has been the site of nine wrecks over the past two years. Five of those crashes were injury accidents.

Orellana was transported to Saint Thomas River Park Hospital for treatment and subsequently released.