UPDATE: Driver hits pedestrian, parked car in The Junction


10:37 AM: Thanks for the tip – 42nd SW is blocked in The Junction just south of SW Oregon because of a crash. We just checked out the scene; police say a driver hit a pedestrian and a parked car – the pedestrian was taken to a hospital by private ambulance. Police and fire are still on scene so the road likely will be blocked a while.

11:05 AM: SPD just tweeted that Traffic Collision Investigation detectives have been called out – the woman who was hit has serious, but not life-threatening, injuries – so that likely means the closure will be longer than first thought. We’ll check back around noon.

11:40 AM: SDOT has the 42nd/Alaska traffic camera (see it here) focused on the scene, still blocked as of right now.

1:13 PM: The investigation scene has cleared and 42nd SW is open again.

31 Replies to "UPDATE: Driver hits pedestrian, parked car in The Junction"

  • Westgirl August 15, 2016 (11:17 am)

    Is that a news helicopter that’s over the junction then? 

    • WSB August 15, 2016 (11:21 am)

      Yes, just a TV chopper; besides our story, SPD has since tweeted about it, as noted above. – TR

    • LAintheJunction August 15, 2016 (11:21 am)

      I think it’s KIRO 7, at least that’s what I think I see on the side of the helicopter.

      • WSB August 15, 2016 (11:22 am)

        It’s really not a huge situation (wishing of course for a full recovery for the injured woman!) but it’s a very slow day around the region so far as we can tell and it’s close to midday newstime so I guess they decided to come on over – TR

  • JanS August 15, 2016 (11:23 am)

    I was just trying to maneuver through that area. Sadly, as with in front of the post office, people frequently do not cross  at a corner but dash across when there are no cars suspected of coming. I hope that’s not the case. And I hope the pedestrian  recovers quickly.  Not a great way to spend the rest of your summer, or any time. :(

    • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (11:31 am)

      Agreed. I also see people throw open their car doors with out looking or thinking. It’s illegal and people who do this may injure a cyclist or get their door ripped off by a passing vehicle.

  • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (11:28 am)

    Thanks for the report wsb. I saw a chopper in the distance and knew I could come here to find out why.

    Hope the pedestrian will be ok.  Sigh.  I drive through here everyday. This is a bad area – a lot of vehicles, construction, pedestrians jaywalking, illegally parked cars, cyclists not obeying rules of the road, etc. I was afraid something like this would happen. Maybe these weren’t a factor in this incident but they are still things the public needs to work on. I’ve let SPD know about it in the past. Lets be proactive to lessen the chance of this happening.

    • Jort August 15, 2016 (11:50 am)

      Hi Joe Dirt,

      Jaywalking only applies to pedestrians who cross the street between Oregon and Alaska. However, pedestrians crossing between Alaska and Edmunds are able to enter the street so long as there is no existing traffic in the roadway at the time they cross.

      The difference between the two blocks is that there are traffic signals at both Oregon and Alaska, but there is not a traffic signal at Edmunds, which makes RCW 46.61.240 (4) not applicable.

      Here is a link to the relevant law: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=46.61.240

      What I don’t get, however, is why people can’t just learn to adjust to driving more slowly and carefully in one of the most densely populated areas of West Seattle. There are hundreds and hundreds of people living within those few blocks — why rush through them and take a chance? Is getting their 10 seconds faster really worth it?

      • jason August 15, 2016 (12:35 pm)

        Huh? There’s been a traffic signal at California & Edmunds for as long as I’ve lived here (25+ years).

        • WSB August 15, 2016 (12:40 pm)

          Jason – sorry, comments can get out of context sometimes, but he was referring to 42nd, which is the main topic of the story above, since that’s where the crash happened.

          42nd and Edmunds is a 4-way stop but no light. The apartment buildings at midblock on both 42nd (Mural) and California (4730) border a midblock breezeway but it doesn’t connect to a midblock crossing feature like the one on California itself – Tracy

        • jason August 15, 2016 (12:41 pm)

          Oh…..just realized this happened on 42nd.  My bad.

        • Jennifer August 15, 2016 (12:42 pm)

          I think Jort is referring to 42nd Ave SW, the street on which the accident occurred.  There is not a traffic signal at 42nd and Edmonds.

          Interesting info, Jort – I didn’t know about that distinction with regards to jay walking.

          • KM August 15, 2016 (5:38 pm)

            I didn’t either, I thought it was unmanged (rather than unsignaled)  intersections, so I wouldn’t have assumed this applied since there are stopsigns. It’s important to point out that they don’t have the right of way, they are just able to cross legally if they yield to roadway vehicles. I am not sure that either point is clear to driver and pedestrians alike, because I know we’ve all experienced poor decision making from drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc. 

      • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (1:14 pm)

        Thanks Jort. Have you noticed people jaywalking in the AK Junction? There is a raised crosswalk mid block in addition to the crosswalks at the intersection lights at Oregon, Alaska, and Edmunds. 8 crosswalks and people still jaywalk across 4 lanes of traffic. People never cease to amaze me.

  • Jort August 15, 2016 (11:30 am)

    Auto drivers frequently speed and try to intimidate people walking across 42nd between Oregon and Edmunds. It is a very scary and dangerous area. When I try to cross the mid-block area near Safeway, I have seen cars accelerate at pedestrians to try and get them to move quicker through the street.

    When are car drivers going to realize that the hundreds (if not thousands) of living units in these two blocks are home to people, families, children and the elderly. Nobody would tolerate people speeding in front of their quiet neighborhood streets, we should not tolerate it in an area where thousands of people are trying to live their lives, also.


    • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (11:37 am)

      Yeah people speed in front of my house to try and make the light. I don’t like it. I’m not in an rea with as many businesses as the Junction. It has gotten worse. I’ve asked SPD for speed enforcement off and on for 10+ years. Nada. Right now, SPD doesn’t have the resources or political will to enforce traffic laws.  This is the result. I can draw no other conclusion after asking for help, stating the concerns, impacts, and offering solutions. So frustrating, I see why people don’t want to get involved. 

    • WSB August 15, 2016 (11:38 am)

      And it’ll be a construction zone too for a while to come – while work has started on the project on the southwest corner of 42nd/Oregon, it has not yet begun on the one immediately north of Capco Plaza (QFC/Altamira Apts/Petco/etc.) but probably won’t be long … and just north of Oregon, on 42nd at and south of Genesee, there’s the new Junction Flats (WSB sponsor) plus Hope Lutheran church and school, West Seattle Christian Church, Holy Rosary Church and School … In The Junction, 42nd is denser overall than California, with a narrower roadway.

      • Jort August 15, 2016 (11:52 am)

        It seems that people often try to use 42nd to “cut” through the congestion on California. This is dangerous, because it already puts people in the mindset that their driving time is more valuable than the safety of all street users. 

        I’ve asked SDOT if we could add speed humps or even a mid-block crossing the Safeway / Junction-midblock crossing. They blew it off.

        • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (12:46 pm)

          Yeah, people trying to avoid California Ave. no excuse but that street is more dysfunctional than 42nd!

    • flimflam August 15, 2016 (1:14 pm)

      do we really know enough about this incident to say “SLOW DOWN”? is there definitive word on what exactly happened?

      • WSB August 15, 2016 (1:26 pm)

        No, there is not. TCIS just wrapped up down there and unless SPD decides to blotterize it, we won’t hear what they think for a long time, if ever.

    • Sue August 15, 2016 (1:16 pm)

      This whole neighborhood is awful for pedestrians. I live on 41st between Alaska and Edmunds. I refuse to cross 41st on the south side of Alaska. Cars speed around the corner and down the block at record speed and with so much activity between parking for Elan41 and City Watch Apartments, Highline Medical, Bank of America, and the back entrance of Safeway/Jefferson Square. It is safer to patiently wait midblock until everything is clear and then cross there since I have time to react. 

  • Wsea98116 August 15, 2016 (11:55 am)

    What is the need to assume or speculate about the cause of the accident, other than to try to somehow form a connection to a pet issue (with all the obligatory disclaimers), so that you can then congratulate yourself on your foresight, and then wrap it up?!

    We used to call this nagging..

  • Joe Dirt August 15, 2016 (12:43 pm)

    The major issue I see with the intersection at 42nd and Alaska is north south pedestrian traffic in the crosswalk on the east side. People walk when it says don’t walk which is illegal (jaywalking). As a result, north/ south vehicle traffic have a hard time turning on to Alaska eastbound. 

  • Seattlite August 15, 2016 (2:34 pm)

     My personal experience driving in this area is that a high percentage of time pedestrians and drivers are distracted by their electronics and in a rush.  Too many pedestrians are jay-walking and disrupting the flow of traffic.  While too many drivers are speeding and not paying attention to pedestrians that are crossing legally.

  • me on 28th ave sw August 15, 2016 (7:20 pm)

    That intersection (42nd and Alaska) should be synced with Cali and Alaska and become an all-ways walk. There is way too much foot traffic to make right or left turns from any of the lanes.

  • Junction Lady August 15, 2016 (9:06 pm)

    In the near future the school year will begin and along with that will be the addition of school buses, drop-off/pick-up by private cars and increased foot traffic by students (pre K through highschool) surrounding The Junction.  If drivers would just slow down around the high traffic area of The Junction, West Seattle would be safer and more pleasant for all.   

  • Kadoo August 16, 2016 (7:23 am)

    42nd and Alaska is a dangerous corner for pedestrians. I’ve almost been hit twice by drivers turning left and not paying attention. I never cross without the light. If I get hit I want to be following the rules so I have a stronger case in court. 

  • Danny August 16, 2016 (7:32 am)

    Hope she is ok…

    We all need to look carefully before we get out of our cars on streets…

    Drivers generally can’t see you when you fling the door open and stand up in the lane until the last second…

    Your safety is in YOUR hands…

  • Nancy Folsom August 16, 2016 (8:22 am)

    I believe the single most important thing I can do, right now and every day, is drive sensibly and respectfully myself. As drivers I think we generally, genuinely cannot see peds, cyclists, and motorcyclists, and so we (I) have to explicitly and consciously will myself to see them. This is my checklist that I consciously think about when driving:

    1. No speeding in any neighborhood, not just my own
    2. Looking for cyclists before opening my door or pulling next to the curb in anticipation of a right turn.
    3. Look for pedestrians at intersections and stop for them.

    Am I perfect? Hardly. But if I recall my mistakes and put the focus back on my own driving, I find it lowers my blood pressure. 

    I couldn’t care less that a pedestrian is jaywalking since I don’t believe that the penalty for jaywalking should be grievous bodily harm. Seems a little harsh.

    P.s. I’d dearly love an analysis of whether it is, in fact, safer to have crossings mid-block instead of at intersections. Leaving aside the fact it’s easier for laws and people to identify intersections and harder to identify what mid-block is, it’s safer, IMO, to cross with only two directions of travel rather than the 4 (?) different directions of traffic at a corner of an intersection.

  • Lola August 16, 2016 (2:15 pm)

    I was turning left off of Alaska onto 42nd everyone had crossed, I was in the turn, the light was blinking Don’t Walk from 10 feet away a guy runs for the crosswalk I jam on my breaks for him and glare.  Pedestrians need to be aware just as much as the cars do. 

Sorry, comment time is over.