Local author injured in collision

Posted: Sunday, June 18, 2000

Two local drivers suffered minor injuries in a two-vehicle accident about 8:30 a.m. Saturday on Douglas Highway.

The drivers were Jim Ruotsola, 65, and Jennifer Claflin, 30. Both were alone in their vehicles.

Rutosola was driving a Ford Tempo. Claflin was driving a Toyota when the accident occurred on damp streets, as Claflin descended Cordova Street and turned onto Douglas Highway, said Officer Scott Erickson of the Juneau Police Department.

``She was coming off Cordova Street and failed to yield to oncoming traffic. The two vehicles impacted in the lane of traffic on Douglas Highway,'' Erickson said.

``Apparently she told the officer at the scene that the roadway looked clear to her,'' Erickson said.

He added that Claflin will probably receive a citation for failure to yield. He estimated damage to each vehicle at $5,000.

Claflin is a receptionist and a graduate of Juneau-Douglas High School who has lived in Juneau for about 20 years.

Ruotsola is a third-generation Douglas resident retired from a military career that spanned 42 years. He served in both Korea and Vietnam. He is the author of an aviation history, ``Pilots of the Panhandle: 50 Years of Flying in Southeast Alaska.'' He has collected more than 3,000 aviation photos, some of which are on display at the Hangar on the Wharf, a downtown restaurant.

Ruotsola and Claflin were transported by ambulance to Bartlett Regional Hospital, where they were treated and released by 1 p.m., said nursing supervisor Nina Rajala.

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