Driver identified in fatal Springfield crash

People in the area pulled the victim out of the car and bystanders tried performing chest compressions, police said. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, according to officials.

Posted: Apr 10, 2021 2:46 PM
Updated: Apr 11, 2021 9:11 AM

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- Police have identified the driver in Saturday's fatal crash on Franklin Blvd as 52-year-old David Anthony Chavez of Springfield, who died at the scene.

Police say nobody else was injured.

The vehicle was travelling westbound and crashed into a power line at the intersection of Franklin Boulevard and Glenwood Boulevard Saturday afternoon. Police got a report of a single car crash around 1:15 p.m.

The vehicle was a 2004 Lexus RX330.

Witnesses said they saw the driver going about 80 mph before crashing into a power pole. The pole toppled over, and shortly after the crash, the car burst into flames.

"I'm not sure if the fire started because of the involvement of the electrical wires, or if it's just the vehicle fire from the impact," Sgt. David Grice with the Springfield Police Department said.

People in the area pulled the victim out of the car and bystanders performed chest compressions, police said. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, according to officials.

Several blocks in the area do not have power as a result of the crash. There is no exact time for when power will be restored but workers on scene said they won't be able to complete the job until the police complete their investigation and clear the area.

Traffic is closed for a portion of Franklin Boulevard while crews work to clean up the damage as well.

Residents that live near the incident said they are familiar with motor vehicle incidents on that specific boulevard. 

There's been several accidents here where lives have been taken from a car accident right among these trees right here," said Kelley Martinez, a nearby resident that frequently travels on Franklin Blvd.

The trees that she was referring to were directly behind the power lines that the man crashed into. Just a few feet away from the crash, there is a heart painted on one of the trees. Martinez said that heart was painted in honor of someone who died previously, in a separate collision.

All lanes of Franklin Blvd. were diverted for more than five hours following the collision while investigators collected evidence and processed the scene.

Police say speed appears to have been a contributing factor for the crash.

Police ask anyone with information to call Lt. George Crolly with the Springfield Police Department at 541-726-3714.

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