Although not a frequent occurrence, vehicle mishaps in a coastal town can happen. Port Orford has certainly seen their fair share. Situated on Highway 101 near some of the most beautiful stretch of coastline anywhere, accidents can take residents and drivers by surprise, such as this flipped chip truck during a rare weather event known as a microburst in 2004, captured by photographer Alan Mitchell.

Hwy 101 – Microburst Flipped Chip Truck – East entrance – December 9 2004.

The weather certainly is a mitigating factor in these types of accidents. Even without the presence of a microburst, the Oregon Coast can see gale force winds during the winter months and it behooves travelers to stay informed of current weather forecasts, using sites from groups like NOAA and TripCheck (Oregon Department of Transpartation) before traveling during a storm event. In yet another microburst weather event, this 2006 flipped chip truck captured by photographer Alan Mitchell made the regional news.

TWO PHOTOS ABOVE: Hwy 101 – Microburst Flipped Chip Truck.
East entrance of Port Orford, December 11 2006. Alan Mitchell Collection.
Photographer Rockne Berge documenting the Flipped Chip Truck for posterity. 2006.
Hwy 101 – Microburst Flipped Chip Truck Rescue (precariously perched over the Port Orford Visitors Center). East entrance December 11 2006. Alan Mitchell Collection.

Visitors who decide to explore the local beaches in their vehicles can often find themselves in an unwanted off-road adventure, especially if they set out right before the rising tide. If you decide engaging in this kind of endeavor is something you want to do, keeping an eye on the tide tables year round is highly recommended.

… and be warned that venturing out during the stormy winter months is quite dangerous indeed whether by car or foot. Weather events resulting in sneaker waves and phenomenons such as the King Tides can take the uninitiated by surprise. Exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings so you can enjoy the beauty of the Southern Oregon Coast.