Update: Truck crash at 48th and Hudson, driver OK

February 23, 2013 at 1:04 am | In West Seattle news, WS breaking news | 25 Comments

(First two photos by WSB’s Katie Meyer)
1:04 AM: Most of the units are being canceled, but if you’re west of The Junction in the 48th/Hudson area, the initial response was for a “heavy rescue” call related to a crashed truck. First crews on the scene say the person in the truck got out OK, so there’s no need for “heavy rescue,” which usually means someone has to be cut out of wreckage.

1:30 AM: WSB’s Katie Meyer reports from the scene that the driver is indeed OK; the truck is on its side against a hedge. This is an intersection with a traffic circle, since 48th SW otherwise is a long straightaway – through residential neighborhoods – from Seaview to Genesee (and this intersection also is where you can head west toward Jacobsen for access to Beach Drive). We’re adding a photo from neighbor David atop the story for starters. Katie, meantime, says that the intersection is not blocked, so late-night drivers can still get to/through that area.

2:07 AM: Added Katie’s photos; neighbor David sent new ones as the wreckage was handled by a tow crew, so that’s what you see over this paragraph. Katie was told at the scene that it did not appear to be a high-speed crash – maybe 30 to 40 mph, though that’s fast enough at an intersection with a traffic circle.

SATURDAY AFTERNOON P.S. This has been classified as a DUI investigation.


  1. It sounded fast to me.

    Comment by J — 7:35 am February 23, 2013 #

  2. Glad the driver is OK.

    Comment by Robindianne — 7:45 am February 23, 2013 #

  3. Definitely too fast especially since there are some streets with NO stop signs.

    Comment by W — 7:56 am February 23, 2013 #

  4. Having a traffic circle next to my house, 30 to 40 mph is too fast to be going around. There is absolutely no need to be going that fast. 99% of these intersection traffic accidents occur because people are being self-centered, careless and expecting the other person to do the right thing and yield.

    I have seen too many intersection accidents by my house and am amused to hear each person blaming the other, when in fact both parties are to blame. Yield people, Yield!

    Comment by Eric — 8:26 am February 23, 2013 #

  5. “High speed” is somewhat relative. 35-40 mph going through a traffic circle probably qualifies as too fast for that circumstance.

    Comment by Jay — 9:41 am February 23, 2013 #

  6. Speed north/south on 48th as they travel to the Erskine/ 48th curve at this location is a costant year long problem with little or no enforcement.

    Comment by LS — 10:22 am February 23, 2013 #

  7. Seems like it would be pretty hard to flip a truck at an intersection with a traffic circle and probably no other traffic around unless you’re either impaired and/or going at excessive speeds.

    Comment by Nick — 12:12 pm February 23, 2013 #

  8. West Seattle Blog,
    The term “truck” typically refers to a large, commercial vehicle like a semi-truck. Although it’s sometimes used in reference to pick-up trucks to distinguish the vehicle from conventional “cars”, that use isn’t appropriate in this story since the nature of the vehicle’s involvement in this crash is virtually the same as if it had been a car. In short; This wasn’t a “truck crash”.

    Comment by Jim — 1:07 pm February 23, 2013 #

  9. Way too fast. Lucky no one was walking there..

    Comment by JN — 1:53 pm February 23, 2013 #

  10. Alcohol involved?

    Comment by Citizen Sane — 3:28 pm February 23, 2013 #

  11. While that did not appear to be the case at the scene, according to our crew, Tweets By Beat has classified the call as a suspected DUI:

    Comment by WSB — 3:36 pm February 23, 2013 #

  12. The term “truck” often refers to a “pick-up truck”, Jim. Don’t know what planet you are from…

    Comment by Citizen Sane — 4:51 pm February 23, 2013 #

  13. Glad the driver is ok, but folks need to be extra cautious when driving trucks because of the higher center of gravity.

    Truck looks like it is totaled, but lucky for the driver he will walk away from it.

    Comment by West Seattle Hipster — 7:11 pm February 23, 2013 #

  14. @ Jim…huh?

    Comment by m — 10:36 pm February 23, 2013 #

  15. light truck refers to a pickup, and truck refers to a vehicle with a payload greater than 4000 pounds if you want to be technical about it. though i suspect f350s with a payload a bit over that are still registered by the dmv as light duty. so yea, if this was written by a paid journalist with editors it would probably have been corrected.

    Comment by resident — 1:05 am February 24, 2013 #

  16. Hi, “resident.” WSB *is* written by paid journalists with a veteran editor (30+ years). I’m not “correcting” it because it’s not incorrect. Thanks! – Tracy

    Comment by WSB — 1:09 am February 24, 2013 #

  17. Tracy; I’m not saying that describing it as a “truck” crash is unusual. Many journalists make the same error. I’m saying it’s an attempt to over-state the nature of the vehicle and possible consequences in the headline, presumably to attract readers who might not open the story if it more accurately said a “pickup-truck crashed”. As a commercial CMV operator I can assure you that in crashes, the difference between a truck and a pickup-truck is significant, and that’s why DOT, enforcement, good journalists and traffic reporters generally use the “pickup” qualifier to accurately communicate the type of vehicle.
    Thank you on the other hand for using “crash” instead of accident.

    Comment by Jim — 8:19 am February 24, 2013 #

  18. 30-40 mph in a residential area at an intersection buffered by a traffic circle not considered high speed.. Interesting.

    Comment by Stark — 10:23 am February 24, 2013 #

  19. “… Katie was told at the scene that it did not appear to be a high-speed crash – maybe 30 to 40 mph, though that’s fast enough at an intersection with a traffic circle. …”

    The term “high-speed crash” does not refer to whether the speed was too fast for conditions, just the vehicle’s velocity. In this case it was described properly as not “high speed” but arguably too fast to negotiate this round-about.

    Comment by Jim — 11:05 am February 24, 2013 #

  20. @”resident” and “Jim” – seriously? Do you have nothing better to do with your time than correct the stellar reporting from our West Seattle Blog? If you have such picky stupid issues with the reporting than why do you bother reading it? WSB is known widely as a blog to be admired so why so critical? Get a life. Thank you Tracy and staff for all you do!

    As for the reporting – we live on that very cross-street and the reporting was spot on. We heard it and watched the clean up of the truck and it’s contents. The tree that was hit will bear the scars forever unfortunately. We, too, are glad that the driver was ok.

    Comment by neighbor — 12:38 pm February 24, 2013 #

  21. The speed limit on any street not otherwise marked is 25mph. This dolt, and yes I was at the crash site within 90 seconds of it happening, was under the influence and admitted it. 40 miles an hour on the 4800 block is very common. I’d love to be able to have the police ticket each and every car that speeds on 48th – many children – no need to speed.

    Comment by 48th SW Resident — 12:47 pm February 24, 2013 #

  22. Upon first reading the story headline, I was absolutely sure that a road train had crashed in the residential roundabout at Hudson and 48th, but then I looked at the three color photos included with the story and figured out it was a pickup truck without having to call out the editor.

    Comment by Ajax — 12:52 pm February 24, 2013 #

  23. “WSB is known widely as a blog to be admired so why so critical? ”

    Because it is an admired and professional product that links its headlines at the ST, where a casual scanner (who may not open the story) reads that a “truck” crashed in West Seattle. I drive what responsible media calls a “truck” and we frankly don’t like being implicated as a group in crashes we are not involved in. It isn’t good enough that the error is corrected when a reader opens the story, since the majority of those reading the ST headline won’t. It’s brought to the attention of WSB so it can avoid this error in the future, which far from damaging the admiration it enjoys, can only help make it better.

    Comment by Jim — 2:01 pm February 24, 2013 #

  24. *sigh*

    Comment by Eric — 4:49 pm February 24, 2013 #

  25. @Jim – I myself drive a “pickup” truck and assumed (before opening the article) that it was a “pickup” truck that crashed. Keep up the good work WSB!

    Comment by "Truck" Driver — 10:47 am February 25, 2013 #

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