UPDATE: Teenager hit while crossing at California/Dakota

(Added: WSB photo)

6:37 PM: An emergency response is blocking most if not all of California at Dakota, north of The Junction. We don’t have details yet – we have a crew on the way – but at least one person is injured and being taken to the hospital, according to radio communication.

6:51 PM: At the scene, we’re told a driver hit a pedestrian. She was crossing California. She’s being taken to the hospital. The Traffic Collision Investigation detectives are on their way to investigate; California is closed in the meantime.

7:33 PM: SFD tells us the pedestrian is a 17-year-old girl, in serious condition when taken to the hospital. … Also note, Metro has sent an alert that bus routes 50 and 128 are delayed because of the closure.

8:08 PM: Metro says the buses have resumed normal operations so that suggests the road has reopened (we won’t be able to go verify for a while).

8:55 PM: See comments for updates on the street’s status.

47 Replies to "UPDATE: Teenager hit while crossing at California/Dakota"

  • wsbliss October 18, 2019 (6:58 pm)

    We were driving past as the ambulance and fire truck arrived. So grateful for the kind neighbors who were clearly working together to protect the person who was injured. Sending well wishes and love.

  • Karen October 18, 2019 (7:20 pm)

    People!  Please watch out for pedestrians!  Shortly after this incident Hubby and I were crossing 44th by True Value, both of us wearing LED flashing armbands, and a woman nearly blew the stop sign in front of us.  She rolled down her window and said something to us.   I didn’t hear what it was, which probably was fortunate for everyone.

    • Shawn October 18, 2019 (7:40 pm)

      Let’s not jump to conclusions and place fault here. 

    • M October 18, 2019 (8:10 pm)

      Hope this girl recovers swiftly.  In my opinion, it is time for the entire stretch of California ave SW to be reduced to 25mph.  

      • Matt P October 18, 2019 (9:36 pm)

        Then people might actually go the current speed limit of 30!  I generally drive about 25 as I’m watching out for people crossing.  Whenever I cross when coming home from the bus though, I always make sure the cars have seen me and are stopping before I step out.  Too risky not to unfortunately even at intersections clearly marked with flashing lights.

        • Jason October 19, 2019 (1:40 am)

          Thank you Matt for having common sense and using your survival instincts.  I see too many pedestrians (kids and adults) these days with a “pedestrian entitlement” attitude that just walk right out in front of traffic without even looking, assuming drivers see them, hiding in the shadows on bright sunny days, wearing dark clothing at night… seems like that common survival sense is all but gone anymore.  Same goes for bicyclists.

          • Kathy October 19, 2019 (2:49 pm)

            As long as we are making generalizations, people walking and biking are entitled to use the road just as  much as people in cars are entitled to drive on them. And they are often challenged to make any kind of eye contact with drivers when people in cars are paying more attention to their dashboard controls or phones than the road ahead, or have windows darkened by tinting beyond the legal limit. People driving are required to drive slowly enough and pay attention enough to perceive a person crossing the street and stop before hitting them. 

          • Jason October 19, 2019 (4:44 pm)

            “They are often challenged to make any kind of eye contact with drivers when people in cars are paying more attention to their dashboard controls or phones than the road ahead” …And that’s where the missing survival instinct tells them “I’m a pedestrian, I’ve got the right of way” and they step out in front of said vehicle.  We could debate this all day, but the undeniable fact is that common sense everywhere is on the decrease.  Like the idiots who choose to ride a bicycle in traffic on Alki Avenue when there is a bike path 10 feet to their right.  

          • Kathy October 25, 2019 (9:17 pm)

            Jason, that is not a bicycle path. It is a multi-use path. Sometimes it is separated between wheeled and pedestrian traffic. Wheeled traffic paths can  include people in wheelchairs, on roller skates and roller blades, skateboards, scooters, tricycles and toddler push bikes without pedals, people pushing strollers, joggers, pedestrians who get confused and hang out in the wheeled lane, and yes, bicycles. A person using a bike for transportation has every legal right to use the street to ride with motor vehicle traffic to avoid collision on the shared path with pedestrians and other slower wheeled traffic. Calling them idiots makes you seem like you are angry at them for no reason, and I really hope you are not driving angry because that is dangerous to everyone. I suggest instead of blaming hypothetical pedestrians and bicyclists you focus your efforts on driving defensively at a speed that allows you plenty of time to react to unexpected road hazards.  When I bike I act like everyone is out to kill me but I don’t hold it against them because that would make me an angry person. You should do the same when driving.

  • I. Ponder October 18, 2019 (7:35 pm)

    I just walked from Whole Foods to Seaview neighborhood. Numerous drivers in such a hurry they aren’t even looking for pedestrians in crosswalks. One guy came right up to me with his car. He was texting. Didn’t see me until I yelled at him. I need to start carrying a metal “crossing stick”.

  • NW October 18, 2019 (7:50 pm)

    I use extreme caution and walk slow while crossing the street and also even in broad daylight use a very high visibility light to increase my chance of being seen. I hope this young person is ok. 

  • Molly October 18, 2019 (8:11 pm)

    I did whap a car with my cane last week.  Woman made a right on red without looking.  I was already in the crosswalk with the walk light on. 

  • Carolyn H October 18, 2019 (8:29 pm)

    We were grabbing dinner driving down ca and saw the cops, closed off street, tape. Had no idea what was going on so my son looked up WS blog and saw pedestrian was hit.  No one wants to learn someone is hurt but definitely tough to read it was a teenager.  Praying they are okay.  Thoughts to the parents/family.  

  • Momager October 18, 2019 (8:35 pm)

    They still have California Ave from Andover to Dakota blocked off going south bound but opened going north bound. People heading south need to turn at Andover. The officer is yelling at drivers that keep wanting to go straight and ignoring the flares in the road! 

  • deo October 18, 2019 (8:39 pm)

    This is tragic! Hope she gets better and regains ability. It happened on intersection with flashing lights, and yet there are many intersections where there are no flashing lights. How to get bad drivers to pay attention? Some are on the phone (I see one every day) and some don’t stop for people on the road. When hearing news like these I miss traffic police.

  • Conor October 18, 2019 (8:51 pm)

    The road is still closed as of now, FYI. Busses and traffic have been rerouted. 

    • WSB October 18, 2019 (8:53 pm)

      Thanks, Metro doesn’t usually send that type of wording with reroutes….

  • Quora October 18, 2019 (9:13 pm)

    I live near Cal Ave and the speeding on that road is insane. Also, because you can park on the sides of the street, visibility and pedestrian safety is a huge problem. It’s time for our city leadership to make some changes. I myself wrote Herbold’s office last week to argue 1) expanding the school zone around Madison Middle School to go all the way out towards Cal Ave and 2) install a “flashing light” crosswalk at Cal Ave and Spokane. People will never slow down. They drive like they are the most important person in the world and where they have to be takes precedent over all else. It’s maddening and I’m sick and tired of the irresponsibility.

  • Dan October 18, 2019 (9:16 pm)

    Still closed and taped off. My prayers go out to the girl and her family.

  • WS Mom October 18, 2019 (9:18 pm)

    My thoughts and prayers are with this teen and her family – but also with the driver who hit her. What a terrible night for all involved.

  • been there October 18, 2019 (9:36 pm)

    Prayers for all involved.  Please God let the kid recover and everyone gets a peace of mind.  

  • Mar October 18, 2019 (9:47 pm)

    I really hope she makes a quick recovery :( There have been several times that I’m crossing the street with my (infant) daughter, and a car takes a sharp turn suddenly and almost hits the stroller. What makes me feel worse is that several times I look at the driver and their hand shot to their heart, their mouths open, then I know for sure they weren’t paying attention / weren’t in control and almost hit us! This happened at least 3 times while walking on Alaska. I really wish people would be more careful. My thoughts with this teen and her parents, and praying for her recovery.

  • Chris October 18, 2019 (10:00 pm)

    Everybody needs to pay better attention.  Drivers have to have their heads on a swivel to watch the pedestrians and the other cars all at the same time.  Pedestrians need to realize that just because the sign says walk you still have to watch out for cars.  You can be 100% right but if you are dead what good does that do you?  It is all of our responsibilities to make the streets safe.  I am praying for the girl who was hit and whoever was driving    

  • carole October 18, 2019 (10:26 pm)

    Is that the intersection with the flashing crosswalk?

    • 22blades October 18, 2019 (10:55 pm)

      Yes it is. Hoping for a swift recovery. Ladies & gentlemen, an automobile is not an appliance. It is a 2 ton piece of machinery that requires skills. I “drive” machinery for a living and I can tell you, the moment you discount this piece of machinery & the skills involved, you are holding an uncontrolled weapon in your hands. It can do as much, if not more than a gun. Please, for the sake of the safety of your neighbors and loved ones, respect the skills required to operate the machinery.

    • JB October 18, 2019 (11:00 pm)

      yes, by corrys dry cleaning and homestreet bank. 

    • Dog walker October 18, 2019 (11:45 pm)

      I use that crosswalk, and my experience is that some cars don’t stop when the crossing lights are flashing. Crossing is really dangerous when it’s dark and rainy.

  • Sara October 19, 2019 (2:40 am)

    That exact area is really dark and I have almost missed seeing pedestrians even though there is a crosswalk. They need more lighting. This time of year is hard with the rain and darkness. I hope the recovery goes well. 

  • Aml October 19, 2019 (6:48 am)

    That intersection is horrible.  People please drive slower!  Prayers for this young girl.  My daughter crosses this intersection and tells me people just drive through even with the lights blinking.  California street  is not a freeway!  Praying for this young girl. 

  • Chris October 19, 2019 (7:32 am)

    I hope the young lady recovers. That should be a perfectly safe place to cross the street.I noticed that California was backed up about two blocks at some stoplights the other day. During rush hour it has become a major alternative for people who are rerouting because of construction. It is so heavily used right now that I think it adds to drivers frustration.

  • WSB October 19, 2019 (8:08 am)

    A reminder, NO VICTIM BLAMING. A teenage girl is in the hospital. Those of us driving multi-ton metal boxes bear the responsibility for watching out for vulnerable people like those walking and riding, who have as much right to use the streets as we do.

    • Concerned October 19, 2019 (8:28 am)

      Please let us know if you get any updates on this young lady. 

  • Al October 19, 2019 (8:53 am)

    If almost got hit there during the day time yesterday, The driver flipped me off. I wish she has stoped. I hope the girl is ok.  possible set up an account to help with her bills.  Also the driver should not drive again.  Can SPD get a car up in that  area and start  giving tickets out.  I have talk to so many others and they agree if cops gave out tickets this would slow down. Thanks 

  • anonyme October 19, 2019 (10:46 am)

    Molly, I’m thinking of getting a cane for that very purpose.  I was crossing Alaska with the signal by Whole Foods yesterday, which doesn’t allow enough time for slow movers.  Some entitled young snot pulled right up to my knees and started blasting his horn.  I wish I’d had that cane.  But seriously, the way people drive in Seattle has become dangerously (sometimes lethally) inconsiderate.

  • polka dot October 19, 2019 (10:54 am)

    we just saw a dog on a leash get hit in the crosswalk on california and lander last week – it was the middle of the day and not rainingdoes anyone know if the girl is okay?

  • Dominic October 19, 2019 (10:58 am)

    I would like to drop a short note to say Thank you to our neighbors from West Seattle. The 17 years old girl is doing much better. She was admitted to Harborview shortly after the accident. She has a concussion and some cuts and bruises. Fortunately there is no internally injury. She was discharged from the hospital about midnight. Again, thank you for all your thoughts and prayers. Please drop me a note if you witnessed the incident. She didn’t remember anything about the accident. From her host family 

    • WSB October 19, 2019 (12:43 pm)

      Thank you for the update, glad to hear this.

      • Kerry October 19, 2019 (6:17 pm)

        Dominic…I saw it happen. I was driving north on California….saw the girl in my lane and braked to allow her safe crossing….she continued on into the other lane I think feeling protected by the crosswalk designation. I held my breath as I couldn’t see in the rain and darkness if she was going quickly enough or if the oncoming car had seen her.  The oncoming car did not seem to be speeding but I it didn’t seem to be braking either (but hard to tell from my angle in darkness and rain). I heard a horrifying crunch and saw her body fly up in the air and fall to the street. I stopped and called 911 and then ran over to find a large group sheltering her from the rain.  Within just a couple minutes I could see the aid car arriving.  I was worried it was a fatality…the noise of the impact made me physically ill.  I’m so gratified she isn’t grievously injured or worse.  

    • r October 19, 2019 (2:24 pm)

      Oh my god thank you!!!! I was one of the people who was trying to direct traffic/help out after it happened and I’ve been so worried about her. I’m so glad she’s going to be okay.

    • Karen October 19, 2019 (3:05 pm)

       My wife and I were there. I was the one who called 911 and was directing traffic around the scene of the accident. We were in the crosswalk perpendicular of where she was. My wife and I didnt witness the point of impact but saw from immediately after until she was loaded in the ambance and the police excused us from the scene. We are beyond glad to hear her injuries are much less than what were initially thought. Hugs and prayers. Let me know if I can answer any questions.

    • JM11 October 19, 2019 (4:55 pm)

      I am so glad she is ok. I was driving north on California and saw the moment of impact. Very upsetting. I pulled over and saw the several people already at her side and calling 911. Great job! I stayed long enough to give a report to the officer who arrived shortly after the medics showed up. Again, I am so happy she is safe and doing well! 

  • WSMoM October 19, 2019 (4:55 pm)

    I am so glad to hear that.  I too have been so worried about her.  I saw the kind people that were rallying around her and directing traffic.  So grateful she was cared for by them.  Please let this be a reminder to slow down on these streets. This is a very heavy pedestrian area and cars need to slow down!  Especially on evenings like last night.  Prayers are with you!

    • Wonderer October 19, 2019 (10:43 pm)

      Why is California Ave so poorly lit?  There are many collateral arterials that are much brighter.  California Ave crosswalks need the in-ground blinking cross lights, more or brighter street lights, AND for people driving cars to start realizing these machine are heavy and dangerous.  They are a privilege not a right. More and more I watch people not slow down or yield to allow for multi direction intersections, speed up so cars cannot turn and tailgate.   The metal and bumpers are not there to push things or muscle through things.   CITY- Add more lighting… RESIDENTS-  SLOW DOWN AND REMEMBER RIGHT OF WAYS TO ANYONE NOT DRIVING AND THOSE ON YOUR RIGHT AT INTERSECTIONS 

      • Kato October 20, 2019 (11:55 am)

        Because the city plants all these trees and then they don’t maintain them so they cover up all the light

  • Mj October 19, 2019 (10:31 pm)

    Youth has its advantages, it’s good the young person was not seriously hurt.  Rain and Dark adversely affects visibility, drivers need to adjust accordingly.  See and be seen is old school but is still good practice.  

  • Dominic October 19, 2019 (11:23 pm)

    Thank you so much for all your concerns and info. She is doing much better today. She can walk on her own tonight. It is quite remarkable after I read some of your reports. It appeared to be a very horrific scene. I do appreciate all the people who have helped out in this traffic accident. Thank you thank you very much.Host family

  • Graciano October 20, 2019 (3:22 pm)

    Glad she doing better…Take a look at the picture of the two SPD officers, you can barely see the second one. As others have said, that intersection needs better lighting. Would also help if they (SPD) were wearing some reflective outer wear. 

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