Man drives truck off Astoria pier into river

A man was being chased by police so he made a decision to drive his auto into a river to get away. CBS News affiliate KOIN-TVreports 27-year-old Timofey Erofeeff, of Scotts Mill, swam a couple of hundred feet into the frigid river before deciding to swim back Wednesday.

Authorities chased Timofey Erofeeff, 27, for prowling for boats. Now he's facing charges of reckless driving and attempting to elude police.

He took off when they approached, prompting a short police pursuit that stopped short of Pier 2 of North Tongue Point.

Erofeeff was driving at about 45mph when he launched himself into the river. He managed to escape the sinking truck and swim away from the pier - briefly.

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When he reached the pier, he couldn't even climb back up-the pier was too tall. Pursuers-turned-rescuers tossed him a life vest but he had to wait for some nearby fishermen to tug him aboard their boat. "Mr. Erofeeff should be thankful too".

Luckily for Erofeeff, employees from a local shipbuilding firm, WCT Marine & Construction Inc., sailed up in a small craft and pulled the hapless prowler out of the water.

After only 20 minutes in the freezing water, the would-be escape artist had to be transported to Columbia Memorial Hospital to be treated for hypothermia. He also allegedly violated his parole and was previously arrested in two other OR counties for theft. Astoria police are in contact with the U.S. Coast Guard regarding the handling of the truck in the water.

  • Sonia Alvarado