Two deaths in two hours this morning brought the number of traffic fatalities in Portland this year to 50—the highest number in 22 years.
Shortly after 6:30 a.m on Dec. 27, a pedestrian was struck and killed on Northeast 122nd Avenue at Northeast Halsey Street.
Less than an hour later, two vehicles collided at 300 North Lombard Street. The driver of a Chrysler Sebring sedan, which according to police drifted into lanes of oncoming traffic, was pronounced dead on the scene.
The police said they suspect a "medical event" sustained by the Sebring driver may have caused the collision.
The other driver is at an area hospital and sustained non-life threatening injuries.
The victim who was walking in Northeast Portland was an adult male, according to police. The driver of the vehicle remained on site and is cooperating, according to the bureau.
While the two deaths mark the 49th and 50th vehicle-related deaths on Portland streets this year, a spokesperson for the Portland Bureau of Transportation says the city may not officially count the death involving the two vehicles. That's because it may have resulted from a medical incident.
PBOT launched its Vision Zero campaign to eliminate traffic deaths on city streets by 2025 in 2015. The city has seen numbers rise, even as it spent more than $100 million on new crosswalks, flashing beacons and speed cameras.