The Worst Day of the Year Ride is February 11th

PPB investigating hit-and-run at SE 7th and Taylor (updated)

Posted by on August 28th, 2013 at 12:56 pm

Streetview looking south on SE 7th at Taylor.

The Portland Police Bureau Traffic Division have located a tow truck and driver involved in a hit-and-run collision that injured a 16-year old boy who was riding his bicycle. The incident occurred at around 10:50 a.m. at the intersection of SE 7th and Taylor. According to the PPB, the boy was riding southbound on 7th when the driver of the tow truck turned right onto Taylor. Sounds like a classic right-hook.

No arrests have been made and “investigation into the circumstance of the crash is continuing,” according to a Wednesday afternoon news release.

PPB officers responded to the scene and found a “teen-aged male bicyclist” suffering from “traumatic but not life-threatening” injuries. The officers soon learned that the young man was hit by someone driving a tow truck and that the person fled the scene. The man has been taken to the hospital where he’s being treated for his injuries.

Investigators are trying to learn more about the tow truck. So far, it has been described as a flat-bed and it was last seen traveling westbound on Taylor.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the police non-emergency line at (503) 823-3333.

The Oregonian has a photo taken at the scene while the rider was still on the ground being treated by first-responders.

SE 7th is the main north-south bike route on the central eastside. This intersection has commercial use on three corners and an apartment building on the other. In general, this area can be quite unnerving to ride (and drive) in. It’s also directly adjacent to the U.S. Post Office. SE Taylor is a common way that people bike to and from downtown via the Eastbank Esplanade.

This is the third serious hit-and-run collision in the past three months involving someone on a bike. In June, Mike Cooley was hit and left on the ground severely injured while biking home from work up N. Interstate Avenue. Then just a few weeks ago Henry Schmidt was hit while walking his bike on SW Barbur Blvd.

We’ll have more on this latest hit-and-run as details become known.

Update 4:13 p.m.: The above post has been updated to reflect news that police had “located” the truck and driver involved in this collision.

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  • Chris I August 28, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    That area is pretty ugly when traffic is high. Lots of drivers blowing stop signs, creeping out into the bike lane, pedestrians trying to cross the street (when you stop, the cars typically do not). Hopefully they catch the driver.

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  • Dan Kaufman August 28, 2013 at 1:18 pm


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    • q`Tzal August 28, 2013 at 1:36 pm


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  • Hillsons August 28, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    Flee the scene in a tow truck….that was a poor decision.

    Take it slow on 7th friends, that’s a hairy spot.

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    • spare_wheel August 28, 2013 at 3:58 pm

      On 7th I take it fast in the two wider bike lanes that are to the left of the narrow ones…

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    • 9watts August 28, 2013 at 9:58 pm

      Funny you would say that. I’ve always thought it was a pretty decent spot, until last week when I was heading West on Taylor; waited for traffic on 7th to die down, when I start to cross. New Ford Explorer driven by male boomer with left turn signal on facing me across the intersection. He too sees the break in traffic and starts to execute his turn – into me! Because I’ve been watching him closely the whole time I brake and shout. He appears to finally see me and brakes too. Close call.

      The intersection there is so wide/large/open that visibility is, at least in that situation, not an issue. He was just not paying attention to anything but cross traffic.

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  • Marid August 28, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    If a tow truck was involved, that should improve the odds of finding the driver significantly.

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    • d August 29, 2013 at 4:07 am

      A “flatbed” Tow Truck, as well. Narrowing the odds. Good luck.

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  • Dan Kaufman August 28, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Can we throw this together again – perhaps this afternoon?

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  • Andrew Seger August 28, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    It will be interesting to see how the rest of the media covers this vs the NE assaults on bike riders.
    My guess:
    People on foot, “violent criminals.”

    Person in a tow truck: “unfortunate accident”

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    • Granpa August 28, 2013 at 2:25 pm

      The tow truck driver could have crushed the cyclist and stayed on the scene, told the cops “I didn’t see him” and walked. Now with the hit and run, he is revealed as the lowest form of life that he is. Selfish, heartless, bad driver, irresponsible and coward.

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  • nuovorecord August 28, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Speeds Towing is on SE Clay at 2nd, right in the neighborhood. Good place to begin an investigation…

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  • dbrunker August 28, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    Geeze I ride past there several times a week, just last night as a matter of fact.

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  • Rob August 28, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    Looks as if they found the driver:

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  • Mindful Cyclist August 28, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    As Mike pointed out about, it appears they found the driver. I know AAA has a big tow truck parking lot around there so wonder if that was it.

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  • Granpa August 28, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Do you think his career as a tow truck driver might be in jepordy?

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  • Craig Harlow August 28, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    I would like to think that PPB taps into the resources provided by security cameras pointed at the public right-of-way…

    For example, according to there are multiple cameras along Taylor for several blocks surrounding 7th/Taylor.

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  • PDXRider August 28, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    Fear. Fear of losing job, family, income, perhaps fear of reaction from the community. The driver may not have been a “low-life” but just a guy scared to death and immediately realizing the full impact of what just happened.

    Unfortunate the driver didn’t check his emotions, come to his senses and stop and help the boy. A lot of hit-and-runs turn themselves in after they calm down.

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  • Psyfalcon August 28, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    If the driver was located, why wasn’t he arrested?

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    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) August 28, 2013 at 5:26 pm

      I imagine it’s just a matter of time before they announce some sort of charges against the guy. We’ll have to wait and see… but I bet they want to be careful and make sure they have all their ducks in a row, case-wise, before they take that step.

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    • Pete August 29, 2013 at 10:56 pm

      The hit and run driver who killed my friend Stan in March 2013 has yet to be charged – but I was recently assured by a friend high up in the police force that charges are forthcoming. In order to prosecute with any success, investigators must compile and distill data with excruciating detail, all while juggling many cases and priorities. It’s easy to become emotional and demand immediate action (believe me, I understand), especially when the victim is a loved one or family member.

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  • dwainedibbly August 28, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    1. I’m glad the young man wasn’t killed and will (apparently) recover.
    2. Hit & run in a tow truck (or any commercial vehicle) is a new level of stupid.
    3. This makes two more juries (1 civil, 1 criminal) that I hope to be on.

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  • Alain August 28, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    Thanks BikePortland for the recap on number of recent hit and runs, keeps things in perspective, and keeps us vigilant.

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  • granpa August 28, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    Lets see, towing company hired an irresponsible and criminally bad driver. The driver was in a company vehicle and therefore the company’s agent. The victim of this hit and run should lawyer-up………….Ray Thomas please come to the white courtesy phone.

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  • Kristi Finney-Dunn August 28, 2013 at 9:49 pm

    One of the good things about this situation is that the truck would have been assigned to one driver who shouldn’t be able to say it wasn’t him or her driving. That is why plea deals are so prevalent.

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  • Unit August 29, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    Kudos to PPB for tracking down the violator so quickly. Running over another person on a bike – in this case a teenager! – and leaving them for dead….this is unacceptable, malicious behavior, and it speaks to PPB’s credit that they took this so seriously.

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  • MaxD August 29, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    I work in this area, and frequently want to travel between The Esplanade and 10th ave or so. Salmon is a great bike route, but it does nothing to get one across 7th, Grand, MLK or Water. Taylor, despite having crater-sized potholes, has signals on Grand and MLK, but nothing for 7th or Water. Trying to left on to Water from Taylor between 4:30 and 6:30 is hair-raising! Meanwhile, Clay is getting the royal treatment as I type! Anyone know of any plans to make some bike/ped connections?

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    • spare_wheel August 30, 2013 at 12:15 pm

      I have had to make emergency stops multiple times when travelling downhill on Salmon. Moreover, designing a bike boulevard with unsignalled intersections across 7 arterials is completely unacceptable. Switching to Hawthorne-Madison on my downhill commute significantly decreased my stress levels.

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