Oregon: Fish truck driver Ray Lewis murdered truck load of salmon smolts; busted for DUI
On January 7, Oregon State Police troopers cited LEWIS for the crimes of DUII-alcohol, and Reckless Driving into Lane County Circuit Court.
Oregon State Police troopers are continuing the investigation into Tuesday Afternoon’s crash on highway 126E near milepost 11, in Cedar Flat; just east of Springfield.
Preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 2:50 p.m., a westbound Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) fish delivery tanker driving on highway 126E was loaded with 11,000 Chinook salmon smolts and water and headed to the Row River near Cottage Grove where they were to be released. The fish were being transferred as a result of low water concerns at McKenzie Hatchery caused by floodgate malfunctions at Leaburg Dam, which provides water to the hatchery.
As the driver, identified as RAY C. LEWIS, 45, of Umpqua Oregon, was negotiating a curve the vehicle went off the roadway and crashed into a power pole and some trees. The truck overturned and spilled its contents at the roadside. All of the fish being transported died as a result of the crash.
LEWIS suffered facial and scalp lacerations and was transported to the hospital for treatment of other unknown injuries. Alcohol is being investigated as a contributing factor in this incident and additional investigation is pending. OSP is being assisted by the Lane County District Attorney’s Office (LCDA).
OSP was assisted at the scene by the Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, and McKenzie Fire and Rescue.