A Forest Grove man died after apparently losing control of his vehicle and leaving the roadway in a rural area south of Hillsboro on Friday afternoon, Dec. 31, the Washington County Sheriff's Office said.
William L. Bartels, 65, was taken to a hospital with serious injuries after crashing his vehicle off Southwest Farmington and Rood Bridge roads, according to the Sheriff's Office, which responded to the crash at 2:22 p.m. New Year's Eve. He later died at the hospital of injuries he suffered in the crash.
Authorities said witnesses reported that Bartels was driving "at a high rate of speed" before his vehicle went airborne, crashing into a ditch.
"Investigators confirmed that unsafe speed was a factor in this crash," the Sheriff's Office stated.
Weather conditions on New Year's Eve and throughout much of the week were near or below freezing in the Hillsboro area, with icy conditions blamed for several traffic crashes in the waning days of 2021.
Deputies responding to the scene also located a border collie puppy who was injured, the Sheriff's Office said. The puppy was taken to a veterinarian and is expected to make a full recovery.
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