Neighbors plea for drivers to be careful after crash that killed teen

Neighbors plea for drivers to be careful after crash that killed teen »Play Video
A cross marks the spot on Hazelgreen Road where 17-year-old Brittany Perry crashed her car Sunday and later died.

NEAR SALEM, Ore. -- To the folks who live along its route, Hazelgreen Road often behaves like a highway.

"They just go too quickly," said Amy, a woman who lives along the road with her family.

Amy can recall several close calls of her own. In most cases, people tend not to notice when she slows down on the road to make a left-hand turn into her driveway. Some drivers have nearly crashed trying to avoid her.

"He went into the ditch and up and around because he was going to run into me," Amy explained as she recalled one close call. "He wasn't paying attention."

The most recent crash on Hazelgreen, a road between Salem and Silverton, happened early Sunday morning. Brittany Perry, 17, died after crashing her car into a tree. A passenger in her car was seriously hurt. Perry's friends and family believe she simply fell asleep at the wheel.

Authorities haven't said if speed was a factor in the crash but they did stress that drugs and alcohol were not involved. No matter how it happened, Amy believes the crash can be a teachable moment for everyone who drives on the road.

"Slow down," she said. "Don't be in such a hurry. Life's too short."

The crash has convinced at least one neighbor it's time to move away from the busy road. Others say the ultimate responsibility lies with drivers.