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ATV Crash: Riding Gear Saves Man’s Life
Coos County Sheriff’s Deputies, assisted by Hauser Fire, responded to the report of an ATV injury accident on the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area in the Razor Back Hill area on January 5th. Investigation indicated that both operators were operating their ATV’s within their design limits, but visibility was restricted due to the hilly terrain.
41-year-old Billy D. Swearingen of Glendale, OR, was operating an ATV traveling in a northern direction, and 38-year-old Dean A. Darlington of North Bend was operating his motorcycle in a southern direction. Both operators were headed down the same trail at the opposite direction at speeds that did not allow them to stop or maneuver before colliding with each other.
Both operators were wearing and using current safety equipment, but due to the front collision between the ATV and the motorcycle, Darlington suffered injuries to his face, arms and chest. Swearingen was not injured in the crash. Darlington was later flown to Portland due to the extent of his injuries, but is expected to make a full recovery. If it had not been for Darlington wearing current riding gear, this crash would have been fatal. The motorcycle and ATV both had to be removed from the sand.