UPDATE: ~99-year-old man extricated from car, taken to hospital after 35th SW collision

(Added: Reader photo, texted)

7:22 PM: SFD and SPD are at the scene of what’s described as a 2-vehicle crash at 35th/Hudson, 1 person trapped. Avoid the area. Updates to come.

7:33 PM: We are just arriving. On the north side of the scene, 35th is closed at Edmunds.

7:43 PM: The extrication from this car, a Subaru, is over and the person’s being taken to the hospital.

(WSB photos from here down)

Police are talking to the person we believe is the driver of the other vehicle, a Jeep.

7:53 PM: SPD tells us the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad has been called out, so the closure will likely last a few hours.

8:29 PM: According to SFD spokesperson Kristin Tinsley, the injured driver is “approximately 99 years old.” He was in stable condition as SFD transported him to Harborview. Police told us the early indication was that he was headed eastbound on Hudson, to turn onto 35th, when he collided with the Jeep driver, who was headed southbound.

11:39 PM: Still closed.

12:17 AM: SDOT just tweeted that the road has reopened.

65 Replies to "UPDATE: ~99-year-old man extricated from car, taken to hospital after 35th SW collision"

  • JB April 20, 2019 (7:36 pm)

    Closed down to Brandon Ave SW.

  • on35th April 20, 2019 (7:56 pm)

    my next car is going to be a Jeep.srsly

    • WSB April 20, 2019 (8:09 pm)

      Just a note that the Subaru had to be cut open to get the driver out.

  • on35th April 20, 2019 (7:57 pm)

    thisis actually appropriate

    • WSB April 20, 2019 (10:11 pm)

      Until someone tweeted a closeup, I wasn’t sure what you were referring to.

    • Lisa April 20, 2019 (10:32 pm)

      It would be more appropriate if it was a bunny…

  • Doug April 20, 2019 (8:07 pm)

    I was wondering why 35th was so quiet.

  • waikikigirl April 20, 2019 (8:39 pm)

     99 yrs old?! OMG I hope he’s OK and not hurt too badly.

  • Graciano April 20, 2019 (9:02 pm)

    I hope the everyone makes a full recovery..

  • Elle Nell April 20, 2019 (9:12 pm)

    Slow the hell down!! Speedy recovery for the member of the greatest generation its like people speed up when they see someone turning on to roads these days… ridulous! 

    • Raised in WS April 20, 2019 (9:55 pm)

      “Slow the hell down”… you do realize 35th Ave. is a main arterial, right? How do you know the Jeep was speeding, and thus somehow at fault? With all due respect, from what WSB makes it sound like the driver turned into the Jeep who was heading down 35th Ave. I don’t know about you but when I see something heading towards me fast I don’t decide to turn into it.I hope the driver makes a speedy recovery.

      • WSB April 20, 2019 (10:07 pm)

        We don’t know who was at fault, nor whether speed was involved. Two things of note: 1. That’s just a block away from the future traffic signal (at last report, scheduled for installation this fall) at 35th/Dawson; 2. while the speed limit on that stretch is 35 mph, it is under evaluation for possible lowering, according to the Vision Zero program update earlier this year (see SCC Insight for a thorough report including the “speed limit evaluation” map in the second half of the story).

      • Mike April 21, 2019 (12:25 am)

        I agree with RAISED IN WS.  My grandmother died when she pulled out in front of a full size pickup that had the complete right of way and it smashed right into the drivers side killing her on impact.  Our family had tried and tried to prevent her from driving, but she was stubborn as hell.  I feel horrible for the family that was in the pickup and also injured that day.  Can’t imagine the trauma they endured having been in the truck that ended her life and it was not their fault..Until police determine the situation, nobody on WSB has any idea what happened, why, who’s at fault, if speeding was of ANY issue.  If you saw this incident, contact SPD and help them get all the details.  

        • Laura April 21, 2019 (7:36 am)

          Well said, Mike. Thank you. I am sorry to hear about your grandmother. That must have been so hard on your family. I live right out where this happened and it sounded like a loud bomb. By the time I came out the Jeep was blocking the road and almost up in flames. The guy was walking around just fine. I didn’t look into the other car. I hope they install a stop light out at that intersection soon. 

        • Josh April 25, 2019 (4:42 pm)

          Mike, The 99-year-old involved in this accident is my grandfather. Like your grandmother, he is stubborn and could not be talked out of getting behind the wheel. He is not recovering, and he is not expected to make it past this weekend. I very much hope that the driver of the Jeep was going the speed limit, and does not endure substantial trauma from this accident. My grandfather lived a very full life and there is no benefit, that I can tell, to assign fault to the other driver. 

          • WSB April 25, 2019 (5:03 pm)

            Josh, I was just wondering about your grandfather today – since we don’t usually get names on people involved in crashes, we often never know. I’m sorry to hear he is not expected to survive. – TR

          • Andrea April 26, 2019 (1:01 pm)

            Really broke my heart to read about this accident. So nice that he had his independence for so long though. 

        • Josh April 25, 2019 (6:19 pm)

          Here is a recent photo of my Grandfather, the man involved in the crash. He loved to build things, and worked with wood, marble, and canvas in his lifetime. He created and painted this totem last year for his son-in-law (my dad) that currently sits atop a 30 foot perch in Oregon overlooking Siltcoos Lake.

          • Trileigh April 25, 2019 (6:50 pm)

            Josh, thanks for sharing that great picture of your grandfather. He looks like a lovely man. I hope he’s doing well.

      • Elle Nell April 21, 2019 (3:26 pm)

        I have lived on 35th for over 25 years. Main arterial or not, it 35 mph. This intersection can be tough but my point is that IF you see someone pulling out and you are going more than 35 you will most likely not be able to stop. That is why I say Slow the hell down!! I’m sick of seeing folks driving 40-50mph on a street that has people, animals, older folks, and homes !! It is NOT a damn freeway!! I don’t know who is at fault but I would bet money, the person who hit this gentleman was kit going 35. 

        • Nolan April 22, 2019 (9:13 am)

          The right response to this would be humility, not doubling down on your completely unfounded assumptions. Do better, Elle.

  • Spring ahead April 20, 2019 (10:10 pm)

    People drive far too fast on 35th, yet so many complained when SDOT wanted to introduce “traffic calming,” that the project was significantly altered.It’s nickname is “I-35.” How many more bad accidents need to occur before we can have a safe transportation corridor?We can’t get out of our own way. 

    • chemist April 20, 2019 (11:37 pm)

      I don’t recall what modifications were made between the lower half of the initial proposal vs the phase 1 implementation, but the phase 1 results have not been published by SDOT, despite public assurances Summer 2017 would be the release.  I’d really hoped for the complete set of results before Phase2 plans were determined/implemented, not just the early preview highlights.  This is a segment of the 2017 Vision Zero progress report sdot presented to the city council.

  • West Seattle Truck Driver April 20, 2019 (10:57 pm)

    “Police’s early indication was the driver was eastbound on Hudson to turn on 35th when he collided with the jeep.” I am a commercial truck driver who delivers beverages all over King and Pierce counties in vehicles from 24′ box trucks to 53′ tractor trailer combinations. I also train and mentor new drivers. I have been doing this for 15 years. I bet anyone dollars to donuts that based on the SPD’s initial comments this is a failure to yield situation. One of my biggest pet peeves about Seattle drivers is their stubborn insistence that it doesn’t matter what idiotic thing I do in traffic – it’s incumbent on others to adjust to me. I see everyday all day and never ceases to amaze me. I have never seen a city where its citizens were so self righteous about some traffic laws – like speeding (and indifferent to a whole host of others) that they feel it’s their duty to enforce them themselves by driving obnoxiously slow or in the left lane on the highway. Bottom line – we can have a reasoned discussion about what the speed limit should be on a thoroughfare, but regardless of the speed of the person – beit over or under that limit – it is the lawful responsibility of those attempting to cross or turn onto said thoroughfare to yield the right of way. And if you are of an age where you can no longer adequately judge those things it’s time to stop driving. My heart goes out to those affected and I wish them a speedy recovery but all of this mess could have been avoided had the law been followed and people driven properly. In my industry we don’t evaluate accidents on fault or not at fault – we evaluate on preventable or not preventable. Over 95% of traffic accidents are preventable. 

    • Kathy April 21, 2019 (9:23 am)

      “Obnoxiously slow” is just in your own mind unless there is a posted minimum speed limit that is not being obeyed. Perhaps your job relies on getting places fast but that does not excuse an aggressive attitude that people driving slower than the maximum limit should speed up and adjust to your driving habits. Or that the city should raise speed limits to suit your needs. The fact is, the slower the speed the less damage and loss of life in case there is a collision; that is, unless other drivers get angry about someone perceived to be blocking their progress and let that anger influence them to engage in risky behaviors to pass. I urge you as driving mentor to pass this along to your new drivers. It’s called defensive driving, It is not the responsibility of someone who perceives it safe to drive slower to try to control the responses of other drivers by speeding up. In fact, that is exactly what they tell you not to do in defensive driving classes.

      • West Seattle Truck Driver April 21, 2019 (10:41 am)

        You have some valid points, but what many drivers don’t understand is that when they drive 10 miles under the posted speed or the speed of traffic or camp in the left lane on the highway – and I will just say it again here – it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle in the left lane of a multi lane highway is Washington. The left lane is for passing only. When driver’s behave in this way they do cause other drivers to respond which usually includes quick and multiple lane changes. And I will tell you – statistically speaking, that is more dangerous and causes more accidents. So people should just drive at the speed of traffic. And I will tell you as commercial driver and a proud member of the Brotherhood of Teamsters local 174 – it’s not about getting there fast, it’s about getting there safe. My mention of my profession is just that I get to sit in Seattle traffic all day everyday and watch the stupid stuff people do.

      • wscommuter April 21, 2019 (11:48 am)

        @Kathy … you are mistaken.  Actually, there are minimum speeds mandated by law, as well as minimum speeds mandated by common sense.  WSTD is correctly pointing out the failure of so many to pay attention and drive with traffic.  On the interstate, you shouldn’t be in the left lane driving at a slow speed because of your own perception of what is safe or comfortable to you.  You are actually creating a dangerous (set aside selfish) situation to drive that way.  Responsible drivers at appropriate speeds who are paying attention tend not to have accidents … as opposed to those who recklessly speed or who for reasons of insecurity or other incompetence, drive too slowly.  Both of those types of drivers are a hazard.  

        • Jort April 21, 2019 (7:07 pm)

          Hi WSCOMMUTER, can you help find me the posted minimum speed limit sign for 35th? That’s the only circumstance in which a vehicle is required to stay above a minimum speed. Here’s the law in case you’re confused.:“No person shall drive a vehicle slower than a minimum speed limit when appropriate signs giving notice thereof are erected, except when necessary for safe operation or in compliance with lawLIt’s also against the law to speed. Period. When you ask people to move out of the left lane so that you can continue to speed, you’re saying, “I want this person to follow one law so that I can break another.” I would consider that selfish, myself. 35th Ave is not your freeway and if you’re behind me, you’ll be going the speed limit, and you’ll be dealing with it. 

          • CAM April 21, 2019 (10:16 pm)

            The clause just prior to the one you quoted indicates that no such minimum speed signs are necessary to determine a person is impeding traffic, “No person shall operate a motor vehicle at such a slow speed as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic except when reduced speed is necessary for safe operation or in compliance with law. […] Where any slow-moving motor vehicle tends to congest traffic, any peace officer may cause such vehicle to be removed from the roadway and permit the congested traffic to be relieved.” The RCW for the state also makes the distinction that the state “may” choose to designate a minimum speed for a roadway but does not require such minimum speed be posted to determine that a vehicle is impeding traffic. If the RCW instead said something like “shall” than your point would be valid. 

          • waikikigirl April 22, 2019 (4:24 am)

            @Jort, WS C and WSTD were giving an example of an Interstate, (I-5/I-90)…they were not talking about 35th Ave SW. , yes it may had gotten off topic of the main story but I understood their “meaning” from it and what I got from it was drivers should obey the speed limit and rules on any road they drive.

      • CAM April 21, 2019 (12:31 pm)

        Driving at a speed that is vastly faster or slower than the general traffic moving on the same stretch of road is highly dangerous for you and everyone around you. If you cannot keep up with traffic you put on your hazards, move into the right lane, and exit that street as soon as possible for a route with a lower speed limit. Having the majority of traffic dodge you to avoid a collision does not make you or anyone else safer no matter what speed you are driving. 

        • Jort April 21, 2019 (9:08 pm)

          Again, so you’re saying, “I want to break the law, and I’m going to get mad that people are preventing me from breaking the law.” I’m sorry, you’re going to have to wait for a while while I look around for a reason why I should care that you can’t speed. Sorry for your luck. 

          • CAM April 21, 2019 (10:05 pm)

            Jort – point out to me where I said someone should speed? It might be prudent to redirect your righteous indignation. 

      • Mike April 21, 2019 (11:07 pm)

        Kathy, it’s illegal to drive slow in the left lane.  Once you’re holding up 5 cars on any lane you are required by law to pull off the road and let traffic go by.   https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/washington-state-patrol-plans-crackdown-on-left-lane-camping/  and the law as it’s written https://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=46.61.100 and https://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=46.61.427

    • A April 21, 2019 (11:26 am)

      Spot on W.S.T.D. 

      • Kathy April 21, 2019 (2:55 pm)

        I never argued about the need to stay in the far right lane except to pass – that goes for everyone no matter what speed they are going. But I don’t buy your arguments about keeping up with traffic. If you choose to go 50 mph on a highway or freeway posted 60 mph in order to save gas, reduce pollution, or for whatever reason, that is your perfect right as long as you keep to the right.  It is the responsibility of the other drivers to overtake you safely, and not tailgate. By your arguments if most people are speeding, you should feel pressure to speed too. The only reason that your driving slower would be unsafe would be due to the unlawful reckless behavior of speeding drivers around you.

        • The King April 21, 2019 (8:31 pm)

          No Kathy, RCW 46.61.425 clearly explains impeding traffic. 

          • Jort April 22, 2019 (4:24 pm)

            Hello there, my silly blog commenting friend! Just an FYI, if you “zoom out” a little on your RCW citation that you’re using, you’ll see that it only applies to vehicles on highways. Here is the chapter heading if you’d like to read more: https://app.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=46.61.005The provisions of this chapter relating to the operation of vehicles refer exclusively to the operation of vehicles upon highways”No, nobody is legally required to move over for “impeding traffic” on 35th. Sorry! I can tell you that there ABSOLUTELY is a speed limit on 35th. But sorry, no “left lane camper” law for you. Sorry.

  • Karen B April 21, 2019 (12:06 am)

    Our neighborhood is adjacent to where this took place – west of
    35th and south of Mt. St. Vincent – so some neighbors heard the crash, some saw
    the immediate aftermath, and some of us went out to see what happened or if we
    could help once we heard the commotion that followed. Lots of concerned and
    shaken neighbors here…and our hearts go out to those involved.

    One of the most immediate impacts that happened on my street – 36th
    – is that traffic from 35th poured into our neighborhood — fast. Suddenly,
    some neighbors found themselves having to direct traffic.

    Many drivers this evening were respectful of this mostly one-lane,
    because of parked cars, street. Others drove as though they were still on an
    arterial, or entitled to express their displeasure at being inconvenienced or lack of concern for our
    well being. It is because of these latter ones that I’m taking the time to post

    Even, 3+ hours later, we had cars speeding down our street (and
    narrow alley) and I’ve heard honking and cussing through closed windows.

    Traffic control for nearby streets should ALWAYS be taken into
    consideration BY THE CITY when a major arterial is closed – and those being rerouted
    through a neighborhood because of an emergency need a wake-up call that they
    may be endangering or scaring those who live here, especially if SPD isn’t controlling traffic.
    The upcoming streetlight and crosswalks at 35th and Dawson have been much-needed for years — I’m not exaggerating to say that it often seems treacherous for us to cross to Camp Long.

  • Corby April 21, 2019 (7:09 am)

    You should be allowed to drive at 99.

    • West Seattle Truck Driver April 21, 2019 (10:46 am)

      As a professional driver and Driver trainer I have zero problem with anyone at 99 or any age driving as long as they can perform the functions required of a driver up to and including being able to turn 180 degrees in their seat to look around them especially when backing up, the ability to see and perceive depth, and the cognitive ability and speed to process what is going on in traffic around them at all times. If you lose any of those abilities at anytime you should give it up. I know I will. 

    • Andrea Clare Saunders April 21, 2019 (3:37 pm)

      I used to think that until my stepmother told me about how she came upon a wreck on the auto bahn in Germany  just after it happened right when the police were picking up the dead drivers ,one a woman and her baby, where the head of the baby had come straight off and was lying in the road. Speed kills , simple as that.

  • MJ April 21, 2019 (10:17 am)

    Wow 99 years old I hope he gets to see 100.  Years ago my brother and I had to take the keys away from our mom when it became obvious she was no longer capable to drive safely.  As our population ages this issue will become more pronounced.  And the challenge is many people are capable to drive safely into their latter years, however many others are not.  Thus it is not a one size fits all issue.

  • West Seattle Bob April 21, 2019 (10:47 am)

    I didn’t know Subaru made a convertible…

  • Sandi April 21, 2019 (11:12 am)

    The 99 year old just had a birthday, is actually a rather remarkable individual.  Went to medical school.  He recently passed his license renewal test; and his vision test.  He is an incredibly bright and sharp man.  Went skiing regularly in his late 80’s until a back injury forced him  to slow down.  Please, if you can,  send healing energy for his recovery.  Thank you.

    • WSB April 21, 2019 (12:27 pm)

      Thank you for the update, Sandi. Fire and police information in situations like this ends with the SFD transport so an update like yours is the only followup info we’ll get. – TR

    • Debbie April 22, 2019 (6:23 pm)

      Thank you Sandi for the background. My Aunt is best friends with him is very shaken that this happened. They just went on an Alaskan cruise a bit ago. My Aunt is 92 and still drives around WS. She does say there is so much more traffic now and people driving above the posted speed limits. We grew up here and with so much growth happening, the streets are becoming unsafe. She walks to Safeway and got a bike flag to attach to her walker as she feels unsafe walking her 2 miles. 

      • Deb April 23, 2019 (12:47 pm)

        Debbie, based on past conversations with my relative and his friends, I believe I know your aunt. She and my mother were good friends.

    • Becky April 22, 2019 (9:04 pm)

      thanks Sandi for standing up for him. He is my stepdad and a very good man. 

  • JTK April 21, 2019 (11:35 am)

    Good lord.  Let’s put a stop light at every block.  (There is almost one at every corner already on 35th). It’s sad when the city has to take a lane of traffic away each way and put stop lights at every block.   I walk my dog a lot all over west Seattle.  This is not a new thing.   SLOW DOWN.  And pay attention.  Distracted driving is horrible.   I wasn’t there.  The only people that can say what happened are the drivers and anyone that saw the accident.  The rest are assumptions.    It makes sense that since both left front damage was done to both cars.  They had to be facing each other????   Did one cross the yellow line.   Did one turn on to 35th and cross the yellow as they turned right?   Did the Jeep cross the yellow into the turning car going south?   So many ways this happened.  Everyone could have been doing everything right.  Maybe a medical issue happened in the car.   This is so sad.  All of it.  Even down to the traffic people sat in after the crash.   Honestly.  I’d rather sit in traffic than be in the crash.  It’s the “ME” mentality.  And every “ME” in Seattle is of course “right”.  Sad 

    • Railroaded April 21, 2019 (12:34 pm)

      Almost one stop light on every corner on 35th?  Ha ha, that’s a good one.

      • WSB April 21, 2019 (1:21 pm)

        The existing (and future, at 35th/Dawson) signals are shown in the map atop this story from last year.

      • JTK April 21, 2019 (4:13 pm)

        Hahahahaha.  Almost every block.  A signal or new signal is going In. Click on that map from WSB!   Do you even drive on 35th or do you cut down 30th and speed over the “new” speed bumps like everyone else.  “Me” mentality.   

        • Railroaded April 21, 2019 (7:45 pm)

          I counted the intersections and lights. So half have lights, I guess that is almost all?  Hahaha

          • JTK April 23, 2019 (8:54 pm)

            If you look on the EAST side of the road it IS almost every block.   On the west side it is not.  But they are at most every other intersection.  

  • Deb April 21, 2019 (3:49 pm)

    Sandi, the 99-year-old is my relative.  Thank you for your kind words.

    • Diane April 21, 2019 (5:29 pm)

      glad to hear he’s ok

  • Debbie April 21, 2019 (4:48 pm)

    Deb, please tell him to get better soon, his housekeeper is really going to miss his great personality and great come backs. He”s a great guy. He is in my prayers.

  • K. Watkins April 21, 2019 (7:17 pm)

    Just a reminder that this happened right next to Mount St. Vincent nursing home and assisted living. Good chances that it may have been a resident there. Confused residents may also walk into traffic on 35th on the rare occasion that they escape the supervision of watchful eyes. Please be extra cautious on that stretch of 35th, like you would in a school zone.

  • Karen B. April 21, 2019 (10:00 pm)

    K Watkins: I appreciate your words of caution about those
    driving past Mt. St. Vincent.


    One of my parents was there for nearly 5 years and during
    that time I could see that Mt St. Vincent did a great job of trying to make
    sure that any resident who might be confused or extremely vulnerable didn’t wander away, but at the
    same time didn’t feel imprisoned. They use technology (my mom had a device called a Wander-guard) to alert them if someone vulnerable leaves the building.


    I live a block away on 36th, so I see lots of older people in my
    neighborhood – perhaps a mixture of PMSV residents and visitors to/from there. The
    vast majority aren’t confused. Mostly, I notice mobility issues or hearing loss – which
    would still put them at risk if they were to attempt to cross 35th.


    I hold my breath when I watch some people attempt to cross 35th
    at Dawson or Hudson, neighbors trying to catch an approaching bus to work, people with kids
    or pets – or neighbors driving cars who want to turn left onto the arterial. Fortunately, I’ve not seen many of the residents from PSMV attempt it — and that saddens me on a deeper level since Camp Long is a wonderful destination, and being able to safely catch a bus and go somewhere should be an option for everyone, not just the young and able-bodied.I hope that those who don’t see the need for a stop light and crosswalks here, will give this further thought and perhaps pause for a reality check. 

  • 1994 April 21, 2019 (10:40 pm)

    A driving error can happen at age 29 just like at age 39, 49,59,  …..or 99. Unfortunately, accidents happen.

    • Chuck April 22, 2019 (2:32 pm)

      Of course they can. But this is a ridiculous statement simply because the odds are MUCH higher that accidents will happen to the very young and the very old. It’s why insurance rates are so much higher for drivers at both ends of the bell curve. / I just spent four days visiting my 86 yo (non-driving) mother at her retirement facility, and was around many people in their late 80s on up to low 100s. There’s few, if any, that I would want to see behind the wheel. And if I’m honest (as you should be), actually non. Yet wonderful people, all. But people this age do not have the reflexes, eyesight or even the temperament to be safe drivers. Sure, they have the “I can still do it” ego and pride. / Not at all placing the blame on this particular 99 yo driver. But I don’t believe he should have been driving. My two. 

      • dsa April 23, 2019 (1:28 pm)

          Age discrimination is obvious in this post.  Chuck, I am sorry but you spoke no facts about the crash or specific individuals.

      • Karen B. April 24, 2019 (12:01 am)

        Let me add my two, too.  A four-day visit to one retirement community provides insights, but not necessarily a complete perspective. The older people that I grew to know during the 5 years that mom was at PMSV were also not indicative of everyone in my mom’s age bracket. Many of the people in a retirement facility are there because of health issues or accidents…she was recovering from a severe stroke, followed by major surgery.In that same time period, I knew others of similar ages who were actively living their lives outside of retirement communities and driving without any incidents.My advice to all of us is to stay active, develop healthy habits, and hope for the best — because some of this may be pure luck or good genes. I hope that the people who are around as I/we age are more compassionate and don’t necessarily assume we are at fault because of our age…or because the insurance companies say we are high risk. 

  • Sandi April 26, 2019 (10:22 am)

    Please, especially now…Prayers and respect for the family of Adrian at this very sad time.Thank you. 

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