Monday evening Lincoln City Police and North Lincoln Fire personnel responded to a crash reported near the 600 block of SE Oar in Lincoln City. Officers found a 2002 Ford Windstar van, operated by Paul T. Qualls, age 47, of Lincoln City, had crashed into a ravine off the end of SE Oar.
Witnesses stated they had observed the van traveling at a high rate of speed northbound on SE Oar, traveling off the end of the road and into the ravine. The vehicle rolled several times. Witnesses stated they found three children, ages 5, 8 and 9, had been ejected from the vehicle during the rolling. Two were pinned under the vehicle.
The witnesses were able to push the vehicle off of the children before rescuers arrived.
The driver and children were transported to Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital then transferred to Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland. The two older children were transported by Life Flight and are reported to be in good condition at last report.
The cause of the crash is still under investigation. Officers are looking into the possibility that the driver suffered a medical emergency at the time of the crash.
Lincoln City Police again reminds everyone of the importance of always wearing safety belts and making sure children are properly restrained in age appropriate child safety seats and seat belts.