Police: Elderly man pulls a U-turn on I-5, hit on the driver's side

Police: Elderly man pulls a U-turn on I-5, hit on the driver's side
Photo from Oregon State Police

ALBANY, Ore. -- A driver crashed into the side of an elderly man's car along Interstate 5 Thursday morning after the man tried to make a u-turn across the northbound lanes, state police said.

The elderly man, who was said to be disoriented at the time, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries after the oncoming car hit the driver's side of his Hundai Accent. The other driver was unhurt, police reported.

Police officials said they got a few calls about the Hundai at around 9:40 a.m. Thursday. Witnesses said the car was driving erratically in the northbound lanes .

One of the witnesses followed the man for nearly 6 miles before the Hundai pulled over to the side of I-5 near milepost 233 (just north of Albany).

The witness told police that the Hundai's driver, later identified as Thomas Malone, 82 of Turner, looked disoriented.

After talking to the witness for a short time Malone pulled his Hundai away from the road's shoulder, turned it left across the northbound lanes and was hit in the passenger side by an Albany resident's Dodge Stratus, police officials said.

Malone was taken to Salem Hospital with minor injuries. Police said a medical-related problem could have caused his confusion.

The driver of the Dodge Stratus was unhurt in the crash.

State police thanked both of the witnesses (who weren't named) for helping police by trying to keep Malone at the scene when he stopped on the side of the road.