High-speed chase roars through downtown Hood River

The early morning hours of May 1 were marked by a high-speed car chase which wound its way through Hood River, engaging local as well as state law enforcement officers.

Daniel Cerda, 26, of Sunnyside, Wash., was later arrested after attempting to elude Oregon State Police troopers and officers from Hood River County Sheriff’s Office and Hood River Police Department on both I-84 and through town.

At approximately 7:52 a.m. an OSP senior trooper stopped a 2009 Nissan Altima four-door displaying Washington license plates eastbound on I-84 near milepost 60 for a speed violation.

As the trooper approached the car, it left eastbound at a high rate of speed. The trooper got back to his patrol car and attempted to overtake the Nissan as it reached speeds near 120 mph before exiting into Hood River where local police briefly tried to get the driver to stop.

According to Det. Matt English, Hood River County Sheriff’s Office public information officer, Cerda entered Hood River streets after leaving I-84 at exit 63.

“He went up Second, took Oak Street westbound to Third, then he went up to State Street, east two blocks, down First Street onto Cascade and then north. He took the Second Street entrance back on to eastbound I-84 again,” said English, who was the officer who pursued Cerda in town during the one-minute, high-speed loop back to the freeway.

Cerda then attempted to elude again at exit 64 off of I-84. City Police Officer Don Cheli was waiting at the end of the exit and the Cerda nearly collided with him. Weaving between other traffic at the intersection, Cerda briefly hesitated, then crossed the intersection to re-enter I-84. English and Cheli were joined by OSP officer Thad Routson and Sheriff’s Office Deputy Rick Princehouse in pursuit.

At exit 69, Cerda attempted another exit then quickly returned to the freeway, where his Nissan proceeded eastbound at high speeds, driving recklessly and passing other vehicles.

Near milepost 76 another OSP trooper deployed spike strips, deflating the right front tire. The Nissan continued for two more miles where it stopped and the driver fled on foot for a short distance before stopping and surrendering.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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