Phillip Rizzo, 64, of Lincoln County, Ore. was killed and James Bennett, 61, of Jacksonville, La. was charged with reckless operation and negligent homicide.
Troop I State Troopers were called to assist animal control with a stray dog in the westbound lanes, west of the Whiskey Bay Bridge.
Upon arrival, Troopers made contact with Animal Control Specialists and attempted to get the animal removed from the roadway. Troopers blocked traffic in an effort to allow the animal control officers to safely recover the dog.
Troopers’ crash investigation revealed that several miles east of the incident, Bennett’s 18-wheeler traveling west failed to stop for traffic, swerved into the center of the roadway (straddling both westbound lanes) and struck the rear of Rizzo’s motorcycle and three other vehicles.
Westbound lanes were blocked due to the crash for nearly three hours.
Troopers do not suspect impairment to have been a factor in this crash.