Crash, Gales Creek, Highway 6

Tractor driver rescued after being trapped overnight near Timmerman Road

A Life Flight helicopter lands on Highway 6 near Timmerman Road to transport the driver of a tractor involved in a rollover crash on June 8. Photo: Forest Grove Fire & Rescue

Emergency crews were dispatched to reports of a fall patient on Timmerman Road Tuesday after 9 a.m., but what they discovered was the driver of a small tractor which had rolled over sometime after 6 p.m. Monday night while mowing.

The driver spent more than 12 hours about 15 feet down a ditch on Timmerman Road south of Highway 6. 

He was eventually discovered by his wife, who called 911, according to Forest Grove Fire & Rescue spokesperson Matt Johnston, who spoke by phone with the Gales Creek Journal. 

Crews closed Highway 6 to allow a Life Flight helicopter to land, then relocated the helicopter to a nearby field while conducting a rescue operation to extract the driver from the embankment using a rope system. The rescue operation took 25 minutes.

Emergency crews with Forest Grove Fire & Rescue carry a patient from a tractor rollover crash on June 8, 2021. Photo: FGF&R

The highway was closed once more to allow the helicopter to land there again, and the driver was transported with serious but not life-threatening injuries by Life Flight to a trauma hospital. Each of the two highway closures lasted about five to ten minutes, Johnston said.

“He just wasn’t in a place to get himself out,” Johnston said, noting that the driver also had other medical issues that worsened his predicament.

On scene to aid the man was Forest Grove Fire & Rescue, Banks Fire District 13, Metro West Ambulance, Life Flight Network, Oregon State Police, the Oregon Department of Transportation, and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.

This story has been updated with more information from Forest Grove Fire & Rescue.

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Chas Hundley is the editor of the Gales Creek Journal and sister news publications the Banks Post and the Salmonberry Magazine. He grew up in Gales Creek and has a cat.

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