Snow plow slides into river near Canby; no one hurt

Snow plow slides into river near Canby; no one hurt »Play Video
A tow truck removed the plow truck from the river. (Photo by Canby Fire)

CANBY, Ore. – A snow plow truck slid into the Willamette River near Canby Sunday night. The man driving, Paul Gorbett, had to unbuckle his seatbelt and jump out before the truck slipped into the water.

Gorbett told KATU news he was set to plow the Wilsonville and Canby approaches to the ferry. He first plowed the Wilsonville side and had no problem. But when he started on the downhill approach to the Canby side, things took a turn for the worse.

"It started popping on me," said Gorbett. "So I put my brakes on and they just locked and I just started sliding."

Gorbett described the slide as slow, but steady. He quickly realized his plow wasn't going to stop.

"So I yanked my seatbelt off and just opened the door and stepped out," he said.

The plow truck hit the ferry and pushed it farther into the river. It didn't go far because it was tied down. The truck's front wheels slipped over the edge of the boat ramp causing the undercarriage to get stuck on the edge. Gorbett believes that's what stopped the truck from becoming completely submerged.

It's not the first time Gorbett has experienced slippery conditions. But it is the first time there's been no room to correct it.

"A lot of times, there's more road in front of you," he said. "But this is the first time I've plowed the ferry. I want someone else to plow it next time."

Gorbett wasn't injured and the ferry was not damaged in the crash. Clackamas County road leaders are still determining how much damage was done to the plow.