Port Angeles woman treated, released after truck driven by council candidate hits her

Travis Berglund

Travis Berglund

PORT ANGELES — A 23-year-old Port Angeles woman was treated at Olympic Medical Center and discharged after a vehicle driven by Port Angeles City Council candidate Travis Berglund hit her at Front and Jones streets Monday afternoon, police said.

The pedestrian was identified as Natasha N. Taylor, whose legs were injured, according to the statement.

Medics attended to Taylor, who was lying in the street and was later transported to OMC.

“Based on everything I know, I anticipate Berglund will be issued a traffic citation for failing to yield,” Deputy Police Chief Jason Viada said.

“If you looked at something as serious as vehicular assault or reckless driving, those are for situations that are far more serious than what we are dealing with here.”

Officers were dispatched to the collision at the 1100 block of East Front Street at 3:41 p.m. Monday, police said in a prepared statement.

Taylor complained of ankle and foot pain while she lay in the street, when she was examined by emergency personnel, according to the incident report.

Police said Taylor had been walking north across Front Street at the intersection of Front and Jones at an unmarked crosswalk.

Berglund, driving a Dodge truck, was stopped at a stop sign on Jones Street that was facing south at the Front Street intersection.

“Berglund was checking for vehicular traffic to his left on the one-way street of Front Street,” police said in the statement.

“Berglund made a right turn onto Front Street, knocking Taylor to the ground, and ran over her legs with both front and rear tires.”

Police said Berglund stopped his vehicle and asked onlookers to call 9-1-1.

Police said Berglund did not exhibit any signs of impairment.

OMC spokeswoman Bobby Beeman said in a Tuesday morning email that Taylor had been treated and discharged.

“I’m thankful,” Berglund said. “My thoughts and prayers are with her.”

Berglund said he did not look to his right when he made the turn.

“There was no traffic for a block and a half,” he said.

“It was not like I was going out fast and trying to get out.

“I just rolled around the corner and honestly, with her height, it would have been hard to see.”

Drivers are focused on oncoming traffic when entering the two-lane, one-way street, Berglund said.

“On a one-way, that’s where your focus is, where there is no light and no crosswalk.

“That’s most people’s instinct, but that doesn’t help me right now.”

Viada said it is a violation for a driver not to yield the right of way to a pedestrian at a marked or unmarked crosswalk.

“It is also important to consider whether or not the pedestrian exercised due caution before entering the roadway,” Viada added.

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office will review the police department’s investigation, Viada said.

Anyone not interviewed by police who saw the collision is asked to call Police Cpl. C. Rife at 360-452-4545.

On Tuesday, Berglund was “just laying low and trying to gather myself,” he said.

He did not expect to make the candidates’ traditional trip to the Clallam County Courthouse after 8 p.m. Tuesday for the general election results of his city council race against his opponent, Kate Dexter.

Berglund planned to try to contact Taylor through Facebook to find out how she’s doing.

“I’ll never forget this,” he said.

________

Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at pgottlieb@peninsuladailynews.com.

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