Off-duty deputy tried to remove driver, put out fire
La PINE, Ore. (KTVZ) – A La Pine man died Saturday night after his pickup truck left the end of Bridge Drive, crashed through a fence and landed on its side in the Little Deschutes River, soon catching fire. An off-duty Deschutes County sheriff’s deputy in the area tried to remove the driver and put out the fire, but was unable to do so.
Around 9:25 p.m., the off-duty deputy saw the pickup, later found to be a 2017 Ford F-150, speeding down Bridge Drive, then heard what sounded like a crash, Sergeant Jayson Janes said.
The deputy headed to the area and saw damage to a fence at the end of Bridge Drive and the pickup on its side in the Little Deschutes, ultimately catching fire, Janes said.
The deputy tried to remove the driver, identified as Toye Jeffers, 58, of La Pine, but was unable to do so. He also tried throwing water on the fire to put it out, but was unsuccessful due to the extreme heat, the sergeant said.
Jeffers succumbed to his injuries at the scene, Janes said. The off-duty deputy was evaluated at the scene for smoke inhalation, but otherwise unhurt.
The cause of the crash was under investigation. The sheriff’s office was assisted at the scene by the La Pine Rural Fire District and the Deschutes County Medical Examiner’s Office.