A Salem, Ore., man was killed in a Tuesday afternoon crash that blocked traffic on northbound Interstate 205, near state Highway 500, for more than two hours, slamming the freeway with backups all the way to the interstate bridge.
Police and ambulance crews responded to a call about a motorcycle crash around 3:15 p.m.
The Washington State Patrol said the man who was killed, Michael D. Shields, 60, was heading north on his motorcycle at the time of the crash.
He was moving between lanes and struck the side of a pickup which had stopped for traffic, the State Patrol said, and then hit the rear of an SUV.
The pickup then struck the rear of the SUV, which in turn rear-ended a sedan ahead of it.
Shields was dead at the scene, the State Patrol said. The other three drivers and a passenger in the SUV were unhurt.
The State Patrol said an unsafe lane change coupled with excessive speed on Shields’ part led to the crash, and no citations were issued.
Shields was wearing a helmet, and it was unknown Tuesday night whether drugs or alcohol were involved, according to the State Patrol.
Officials had the road blocked, or were able to get traffic through in one lane, for about two hours as they cleaned up the site and investigated what happened.
Drivers were told to expect delays or seek alternate routes. Trooper Will Finn also said troopers received reports of low-speed crashes, and one road-rage incident where a driver got out of a vehicle and began hitting other cars, in the backup.
The Washington State Department of Transportation said the crash scene was cleared at around 5:30 p.m.