FOLLOWUP: Truck-off-bridge driver was cited, police say

After this double-take crash off the west end of the West Seattle Bridge on Saturday, with the pickup truck’s driver surviving unhurt, the top question was “how did that happen?”

(WSB photo from Saturday)

While information about crash investigations isn’t always easy to get, we were able to get some followup details today from Seattle Police. Media-relations Det. Mark Jamieson told us the driver was given a citation for speeding – driving too fast for roadway conditions. The police report, he said, noted that the driver lost control, fishtailed into the inside jersey banner, and from there went over the railing, landing headlights-down in a backyard on SW Manning. Some debris hit a residence, but no one inside was hurt. The driver was not impaired, police determined.

After talking with Det. Jamieson, we checked with SDOT to ask whether the city bills people in incidents that result in damage to public infrastructure. While unable to comment on this specific case, since it’s just a few days old, SDOT spokesperson Sue Romero replied: “We make every effort to recover damage to public property due to traffic accidents. In most cases, if there is an accident report and the at-fault driver has insurance, we recover all our costs for the emergency response and the cost of the repair to the bridge. We have a special cost accounting system, set up in advance to accurately track the labor, material and equipment used to keep the public safe and restore the damaged infrastructure.”

11 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Truck-off-bridge driver was cited, police say"

  • Westside45 November 1, 2016 (8:30 pm)

    Does that mean they don’t recover costs if there is no insurance? 

  • tedb310 November 1, 2016 (9:58 pm)

    The driver was not impaired, police determined.”…insert joke here…

    • WSB November 2, 2016 (1:07 am)

      Sorry if that read clunkily. That basically just means he was not under the influence. Guess I could have said it that way.

  • nw November 2, 2016 (5:53 am)

    Important to mention in preventing accidents on this curve is because it’s an elevated roadway and it’s exposure to northwinds in freezing conditions it can freeze over very easy that combined with the curve and it going downhill is very dangerous so be careful out there. I recommend sdot put a solid white line thru this section to prevent people from passing and overtaking vehicles while they speed ahead I see it all the time. 

  • TheKing November 2, 2016 (6:02 am)

    There is something about that corner the last couple of weeks, no matter how fast you are going there are serious traction issues westbound. 

  • West Seattle Hipster November 2, 2016 (7:11 am)

    Common sense should apply here.   If motorists don’t tailgate or speed, they generally won’t cause accidents.

  • John November 2, 2016 (7:50 am)

    I drive a pick-up truck and they fishtail very easily.  Each winter I throw in four 60 lb sand bags in the bed of the truck….right on top of the axle.  That makes a huge difference.  I still slow down for all turns when raining.  All truck drivers should do the same.

  • WestSeattleCoug November 2, 2016 (8:37 am)

    nw – while your point is very valid let’s not lose sight of the fact that this driver was going westbound…up the hill. You really have to be out of control to hit it that hard while your vehicle is pulling up an incline.

  • Sarah November 2, 2016 (1:42 pm)

    I also drive a truck. Some days it is really hard not to break traction around these corners on rainy days, even going the speed limit. Like John, I also throw sand bags in the back of my truck on top of the axle for extra traction, and sometimes even have to use the 4×4. Sandbags help immensely!

  • wsn00b November 2, 2016 (3:43 pm)

    IMHO, maybe the truck driver’s insurance should sue the city for the crappy road infrastructure instead. Enough potholes and bad camber to throw off cars even at the posted limit. Every day you have to drive unsafely swerving around potholes and ruts on the badly built and badly maintained roads. Nobdoy ever calls out SDOT’s lack of maintenance as a safety issue. Then you get some BS answer for yet another levy to do maintenance in yet another decade. 

  • 22blades November 3, 2016 (9:46 am)

    Good to know they make an effort to recover costs (especially for people’s negligence). It always amazes me to see a crew of 2 or 3 fixing those impact barriers at offramps and the traffic control personell and equipment to ensure thier safety. Thats a lot of resouces, only  for someone to wreck it again a couple of days later.

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