Molalla firefighters took the Silverton teens to OHSU

Four injured Silverton teenagers spent a cold night in the hills above Molalla after their pickup drove off the edge of rock pile while four-wheeling.

The truck dropped 20 feet and rolled over several times at about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, said Molalla Fire Chief Vince Stafford.

One of the teens suffered serious injuries, including a concussion and broken bones, he said.

Molalla firefighters found the teenagers, two male and two female between the ages of 17 and 19, after a log truck driver called 911 at about 4:30 a.m. Thursday. Stafford said the pickup crashed off a rock pile some distance from Sawtell Road, near Family Camp Road, about 15 miles from Molalla.

“They were up there four wheeling and drove over a rock pile, but didn’t realize it had a 20 foot drop off,” Stafford said Thursday. “They drove the rig right off the edge, and it rolled over two or three times. They were stuck up there in the cold all night. No alcohol was involved — they were just up there having a good time and drove off the edge.”

He said one of the teenagers tried to walk out to Sawtell Road for help shortly after the crash, but he couldn’t make it and returned to the truck.

“Then the driver walked out about 4:30 this morning and got to Sawtell Road just as a log truck was driving through,” he said. “The log truck driver called 911, but cell phone coverage is poor up there and his phone kept cutting out. Finally, the dispatcher figured out where they were.”

Stafford was one of the Molalla firefighters to respond. He said it took 40 minutes to reach the site of the crash, in rough terrain more than 15 miles from Molalla. He said all four of the injured teens were conscious and alert, but they were “pretty banged up, with some broken bones.” Molalla firefighters and an ambulance transported all four to OHSU.

The names of the teens were not available. The Clackamas County Sheriff's Office is investigating the crash.

This is the second time in a month that a log truck driver has helped rescue someone in the area. Two weeks ago, a log truck driver found a mushroom picker on Sawtell Road who had been lost in the woods three nights. He drove the cold, wet and hungry man to Molalla Fire station, where he was cared for and reunited with his family.

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