The driver of a Clark Public Utilities truck who was killed Friday in a collision with two other vehicles in Battle Ground has been identified as 56-year-old Albert M. Apana of Vancouver.
Apana was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash in the 28900 block of Northeast 82nd Avenue, according to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.
Apana was a water systems operator for Clark Public Utilities and was traveling from a work site in Battle Ground at the time of the crash, according to a statement issued Saturday morning by Clark Public Utilities.
“Al was a valued part of this utility for 15 years, starting in the Customer Service Department and for many years working as a water systems operator,” Clark Public Utilities General Manager Wayne Nelson said in the statement. “He was a gentle, kind and professional man who will be missed across the organization as a colleague and, for many of us, myself included, a dear friend. He was known as a devoted family man, and we are holding the Apana family, his wife and his son and daughter, close as we all grieve this loss.”
The collision occurred shortly before 12:30 p.m. when a southbound 2004 GMC Envoy SUV tried to pass a 1974 Ford pickup on Northeast 82nd Avenue. The GMC went into the oncoming lane to pass and collided with the northbound utility truck, a 2009 Ford F-450 pickup. The impact of the crash sent the vehicles colliding into the Ford pickup, the sheriff’s office said.
A nearby fence for a residence on Northeast 82nd Avenue was also damaged in the collision.
Both drivers of the other vehicles suffered minor injuries, and one was transported by ambulance to an area hospital, according to the sheriff’s office.
The driver of the GMC was identified as Joseph T. Dudley, 18, of Vancouver, and the driver of the Ford pickup was identified as James M. Moore, 44, of Yacolt.
Both Dudley and Moore are cooperating with the crash investigation, which is being handled by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Homicide Unit. No charges have been filed at this point, the sheriff’s office said.
“Our attention at this time is turned to providing support and care to the Apana family and those who are grieving the sudden loss of Al. We respectfully defer to the Clark County Sheriff’s (Office) to provide official incident reports as the investigation proceeds,” Clark Public Utilities said in its statement.
The roadway in the area of the crash varies between do-not-pass areas and areas where it’s legal. The sheriff’s office previously said it was still trying to determine whether the passing vehicle crossed the yellow line or not.