UPDATE: Man killed by hit-run driver at California/Findlay

(Added: WSB photos)

10:21 PM: A police and fire response has shut down California/Findlay. Police are looking for a vehicle involved in a reported hit-run, described as a white Subaru hatchback with front-end damage. More as we get it.

10:27 PM: Police say a pedestrian is injured.

10:54 PM: Police now say the person did not survive. (added) The victim is the second pedestrian hit and killed in West Seattle this year, after a 64-year-old woman who died after being hit near 2nd SW and Highland Park Way on March 25th.

11:39 PM: We’ve just talked at the scene with SPD spokesperson Det. Valerie Carson. She says the victim, a man, died at the scene, and that he and two other people had just been dropped off by someone and were crossing California at Findlay west to east when hit. She also says the hit-run driver has since returned to the scene and is being questioned by officers. The road is likely to be closed for a few more hours as the investigation continues.

12 MIDNIGHT: Here’s our video of what Det. Carson said at the scene:

One more note – though Det. Carson wouldn’t comment on a vehicle description, subsequent scanner traffic suggests it may have been a different type of vehicle from what was initially broadcast. We’ll be following up as the case proceeds.

1:22 AM: Police have reopened the road.

1:57 AM: A few additional details from what was just posted on SPD Blotter – that the collision happened midblock, and that the driver “showed no sign of impairment.”

11:22 AM: While the victim’s name has not been released, SFD said he was in his thirties.

ADDED MONDAY: We confirmed with SPD today that the driver was not arrested, pending further investigation. … As posted in comments below, a GoFundMe crowdfunding page on behalf of the victim’s widow identifies him as Nicholas Wolf.

103 Replies to "UPDATE: Man killed by hit-run driver at California/Findlay"

  • anthony May 6, 2022 (10:41 pm)

    he died

    • WSB May 6, 2022 (11:02 pm)

      Yes, I updated the story as soon as I got that information from police.

  • Vee May 6, 2022 (11:11 pm)

    People go too fast there all the time , regardless of stop signs and cross walk. They dont slow down for bus stop there either when bus is stopped, that’s awful 

    • Dan May 8, 2022 (7:52 am)

      Yes, they do. I regularly see cars just blow past stop signs in the surrounding streets. 

  • Bob May 6, 2022 (11:13 pm)

    This is horrific. My condolences to all. I live down the road from this junction and my kids cross Cali at Findlay coming home from school.  SDOT need to light control this crossing asap (not assuming this incident wasn’t more complicated than that).

    • Cath May 6, 2022 (11:25 pm)

      Exactly.

    • Jas May 7, 2022 (8:29 am)

      I was second to roll up to this. Right when it happened. It wasn’t at a crosswalk. It was mid-block. He was thrown to the doorway of the Keller Williams.  I had my windows down because i dindt knkw what was happening.  I jad left the rite sid as they closed jsut at 10pm hrsding south. The driver who hit him went nktth so he passed me. I saw the wife see her husband and just break down destroyed. I was one of the first to call 911.  I cried on the way home and at home. When she saw him she knew. 

      • Conjunction Junction May 7, 2022 (10:08 am)

        Oh, I’m sorry to hear your account, both for you and them.  It is heartbreaking, thank you for sharing, it helps to humanize this story.

      • Joe May 7, 2022 (5:47 pm)

        I am so sorry. How traumatic.

  • Aubrey Herbert May 6, 2022 (11:26 pm)

    This is absolutely heartbreaking. I went to Canna shortly after the accident, not knowing about the crime scene. My hope is that with many witnesses present, the driver will be found and charged. 

    • Neighbor May 8, 2022 (10:34 am)

      Charging the driver won’t bring this man back.  We don’t know the circumstances.  This may just be a tragic accident.

  • Barb Z May 7, 2022 (12:18 am)

    I’m so sorry to hear that.  California is so dangerous to cross.  At 6pm today I was trying to cross at the West Seattle Nursery, had even stepped out into the street, and five cars went by in both directions without stopping. When someone did stop the car behind started honking at them. Even with a marked crosswalk & flashing light  on Findlay people ignore it.

    • Erin May 7, 2022 (9:46 am)

      I’ve had cars stop just to have the car behind them GO AROUND THEM and almost hit me. Very scary to be a pedestrian around here…

      Deepest sympathies to the friends and family of the victim.

      • Ly May 7, 2022 (11:24 am)

        I’ve had the same happen to me while i was walking across with my toddler. Almost killed us.I always stop to let pedestrians pass. But sometimes I worry the driver behind me who is already tailgating me will smash into my car and shove me forward and I’ll still maim the pedestrian. I hate driving around here. People are too aggressive.

        • Paul Mason May 8, 2022 (8:59 am)

          As tempting as it is to sometimes stop for pedestrians mid-block, it’s incredibly dangerous. Better to let traffic flow in the way it’s expected to flow. Pedestrians, never trust when a car stops mid block that it’s safe to cross. When a car stops middle block, it’s common for the car behind to whip around to pass the stopped car. They don’t see the pedestrians you are “helping”.

          • Bob May 9, 2022 (2:16 pm)

            Too liberal crosswalk laws in Seattle. It’s as if Seattle encourages mid-block crossing. There are many tourists and transplants in Seattle so if the city of Seattle expects those drivers to be aware of uncommon crossing laws, tragedies will happen and people will interpret them differently even if they are aware. 

        • Neighbor May 8, 2022 (10:37 am)

          If someone is tailgating you then you should find a safe place to pull over and let them pass.  It’s inconvenient but safer for everyone.

          • Ly May 14, 2022 (3:24 pm)

            This makes me roll my eyes. No. They should not be tailgating me in the first place. I do pull over if it seems the driver behind me is in a hurry, so they can be in their way. But how do we pull over on California Ave? You live here you know how that street is. And what I’m supposed to pull over for every single driver that tail gates? Please. I’m doing 25 to 35 on California. That’s standard speed. Ya’ll need to slow the heck down.

  • Odd son May 7, 2022 (1:06 am)

    I’ve been rear ended stopping for a pedestrian at a crosswalk. Culture shift needed. 

    • Ly May 7, 2022 (11:25 am)

      Yes! This! People drive too close and too fast..idiots.

  • Deb May 7, 2022 (1:11 am)

    So tragic, and sadly unsurprising to anyone who spends any time on California as a pedestrian. A significant road diet is way overdue, from Morgan Jct through Admiral. And I say that as a driver. California should not be a thruway, but it’s used that way, and there have been frequent accidents and near misses over the years. Better street lighting, more stop lights, lighted crosswalks, and speed controls would have a big impact on our qualify of life.RIP and condolences to their loved ones. 

    • Anne May 7, 2022 (7:54 am)

      This is tragic  absolutely-but what are you talking about doing? California Ave is 2 lanes in each direction for only about 4 blocks between Morgan/Fauntleroy  to Admiral- with several stop lights, crosswalks -some with speed bumps,there’ are even islands. The speed limit is 25-do  many folks drive faster?-yes.  We don’t know yet if the driver was speeding-at first report it seems as though she wasn’t impaired -but it was late, dark, raining. the report says as the the victim was crossing in the middle of the street. All those factor in -except of course the driver leaving the scene-very glad she returned though. Heartbreaking for everyone involved-especially the victims loved ones. 

      • K May 7, 2022 (11:50 am)

        There are no islands from a bit north of Alaska Junction all the way to California and Thistle. Installing them would curb speeds and reckless driving while allowing for left turns. Drivers will pass me in the center lane when I’m driving the speed limit or even slightly over.  Drivers will drive a full block in the center lane to try to make a left turn light. It’s a disaster. I’ve asked the City Council a few times and have been met with silence, and I expect even less with the current leadership than before.

        • rocket May 8, 2022 (3:25 am)

          I ride a class 3 e bike that will assist me up to 28mph.  I ride SB on California from the Junction at 25 to 30 mph depending on the downhill section.  I routinely get passed by cars in the center while doing this.  Motorists are often bonkers.

      • SpencerGT May 8, 2022 (12:11 pm)

        People absolutely do drive faster.

      • SpencerGT May 8, 2022 (12:20 pm)

        Or, * do drive faster.  Sorry for the strong language.

  • 22blades May 7, 2022 (6:41 am)

    It’s been noted that wreckless driving & speeding is a national problem. We’ve developed the safest cars but drivers are killing more people than ever. Various DOT’s & DOL’s have failed to keep & demand license holders to safe standards. The fixation as cars as merely a revenue source by lawmakers have put us here. More testing. More skills. More accountability. More consequences. Driving is a privilege. Not a right. SLOW DOWN.

  • Scubafrog May 7, 2022 (7:29 am)

    What a tragedy.  My heart goes out to the family, I’m so sorry for your loss.  

  • LB May 7, 2022 (8:22 am)

    This is so sad to read about.  There is mention that the accident occurred mid-block, and, if so,  reinforces the danger of crossing streets at this location rather than at corners, where drivers may be more focused on watching for us. As someone who  walks most of the time for local errands and for exercise, I can attest to the lack of awareness by many drivers.  But as a driver I have also witnessed, too many times, people darting out mid block to cross a street to, I assume,  save a few steps.  This can be a lethal choice. Especially at night.  A very tragic loss of this person’s life.  A plea to fellow pedestrians and drivers to please slow down, watch for people and for vehicles.  

    • rocket May 8, 2022 (3:27 am)

      This is about as insensitive a post as they come.  Shame.

  • Mj May 7, 2022 (9:08 am)

    Deb – I agree this was a tragic accident, but I am unclear as to what you mean by a road diet, the corridor is already 3 lanes with parking on both sides.  The center turn lane is vital and is used by service delivery vehicles, improves safety for bicyclists (it provides motorists room to provide space for bike riders) and travel speeds of prudent motorists are calmed by the streetscape. 

    California Avenue is an Arterial street, adding unwarranted signals would shift traffic to residential streets that is not desirable 

    • Kevin on Delridge May 7, 2022 (4:43 pm)

      Arterial or not, people live on that street and it can no longer be treated as a high speed thoroughfare. We can thank our addiction to single family zoning for forcing roads that would be good for moving cars into effectively residential streets.
      Improvements that can be made:

      1. The lanes are too straight and wide – narrow the lanes and add traffic calming.
      2. Remove direct access driveways and business entrances to side streets where possible. Where this is not possible, add traffic calming.
      3. Reduce street parking. Often times crosswalks are dangerous due to parked vehicles obstructing the views of drivers and pedestrians (California has many of these). Pull the parking back to allow for adequate visibility.
      4. Add crossing in sensible places. The nursery is an example of a location that is popular but has inadequate crossing – that intersection is very dangerous for pedestrians and drivers.
      5. Replace one side of parking with a protected 2-way bike lane. This reduces traffic by giving residents on California the ability to connect with local businesses, grocery stores, etc via bicycle.
      6. Increase bus frequency.
      7. Raised crosswalks are great for traffic calming.

      This is just a few things that could be done. We can simultaneously reduce speeds and increase safety while not impacting the ability to move cars.

      While California has had a diet, it is inadequate for the usage of the street at this point. Like all things, as we learn more we have to adjust our approach. Our priority should be to move as many people as we can rather than ensuring single vehicles can move as quickly as possible. The good news, when you do this properly it makes driving better as well.

      https://youtu.be/d8RRE2rDw4k

      • StopCuttingDownTrees May 8, 2022 (12:45 pm)

        Uh, it happened in a dense, multi-family and commercial area, so blaming this on single-family zoning is ridiculous.

      • Rise up May 9, 2022 (2:50 pm)

        Agree with some of your suggestions here. Especially, reducing street parking, replacing parking on one side with protected bike lane, and road calming (speed bumps?). Also, someone else suggested road art, and wonder if that could be used in a few areas where there is more foot traffic and chances for unexpected crossings, to alert drivers to these points? California, between the two junctions especially, should not be driven at high speeds, and surely more can be done to make this road safer. Good to see ideas.

  • Conjunction Junction May 7, 2022 (9:41 am)

    A dark, rainy night and a mid-block crossing, this could have happened to any of us that drive in West Seattle.  It could have happened to any of us that walk in West Seattle, even if it had been at an unmarked but legal crossing (corner).   But this was mid-block.  This was a horrible thing, and yet, not unexpected, and until we learn more, an accident.

    @Deb, yes, more crosswalks and lights would help us all,  but California can not be “improved” any further.   You can’t take away any more lanes, the 1 each way and a turn lane are safest. You can’t take away any parking, residents and businesses rely on that.  You can’t expect it to stop being a thurway, its an arterial that carries all the west side traffic, and keeps many, many neighborhood roads safe.  We are already at 25 mph, that no one observes.  Here’s what would help – not having two pot shops ACROSS the street from each other, and having the law that the two entities can’t be housed in one location.  To my memory there haven’t been many pedestrian deaths on California, and while tragic, all accidents. 

    • Foop May 7, 2022 (4:05 pm)

      You absolutely can take away parking. We need to focus more on getting people on transit or foot.Street parking von main arterials makes is very dangerous for turning onto, and for pedestrians crossing, blocks sightlines for drivers and walker.California needs a road diet.

    • Kathy May 7, 2022 (10:32 pm)

      De-criminalize jay walking.  People in cars have a huge advantage over the unprotected person walking and should be held accountable accordingly. Drivers don’t “expect” people in the street because there is a law against pedestrians being there if not crossing at an intersection. This law promotes excusing drivers and blaming the victim. If this poor victim was struck by a person driving 25 mph most likely they would have survived. Look around you, drivers think they are “entitled” to drive at least 5 miles over the speed limit and most are doing much more than that. They often declare in blog comments that they protest against the city set speed limits that they perceive are too low but those speed limits are put in place to protect us.  

      • Kathy May 7, 2022 (11:44 pm)

        Here’s info on the initiative to decriminalize jaywalking:  https://transportationchoices.org/its-time-to-end-jaywalking-laws-in-washington/

      • Rise up May 9, 2022 (3:04 pm)

        See your thinking, but would be worried this would result in more people crossing roads at random and actually increase the number of people being hit by cars. Think having some rules on pedestrians that help increase their safety, makes some sense, even if drivers should have a high responsibility to look out for and not hit pedestrians.

  • Rooster May 7, 2022 (9:42 am)

    So sad to read this. There are no traffic lights on California between Graham and Edmonds. Both Findlay and Brandon intersections are treacherous to cross even in daylight. Findlay is also a popular walk route to Fairmont Elementary.  We really need a button activated traffic light along this stretch. 

    • Sarah May 7, 2022 (10:15 am)

      I agree with this intersection needing a pedestrian controlled crosswalk. My kids walked to FPE for 5 years, and this intersection is the reason I didn’t want them to walk to school  without me  when they got older. I petitioned the city in 2015 when the school re-opened and said it was the official walking route to FPE. The response I got was something like it would be studied in year xxxx (I don’t remember the year). My cynical take on that was “how many accidents will need to happen before it’s taken seriously?”

      • Ly May 7, 2022 (11:28 am)

        Sarah who did you petition with? We need to get this going again. I believe if we make enough noise about this we can push them to do it. This is insane. I hate California Ave SW. So many near misses both for my family personally and witness other near misses too.

  • HS May 7, 2022 (9:49 am)

    My condolences to family and friends. This is just awful. I walk a lot for my errands, etc and although I wear bright jackets, it’s not easy being a pedestrian here. You’d think otherwise since there are people out and about but no.

  • Wren May 7, 2022 (10:00 am)

    Anyone else read that they were crossing mid-block? This could have just been a terrible accident at 10PM in the dark… doesn’t make it any less tragic and doesn’t explain the driver leaving then coming back but it does make me wonder. Drivers all go too fast, that is a certainty. Many pedestrians don’t stick to marked or unmarked crosswalks either… My husband, my dog, and I almost got hit by a car twice in one week at the stop sign at California and Thistle because no one ever actually stops at that stop sign. If I have to walk in the city now I do it in such a way that I don’t have to cross main roads anymore… I have also been the person who almost hit a pedestrian because they pop out in the road in Seattle without even looking.This issue is not simple and not a one sized fits all solution…. 

    • flimflam May 7, 2022 (12:24 pm)

      I don’t know, I’m happy the driver did the right thing and came back to the scene. Even if they are 100% at fault it they at least did that part right. I’m sure they are traumatized at the outcome…condolences to the family of the deceased.

  • wetone May 7, 2022 (10:15 am)

    Very tragic accident for sure. But sadly I see more of these things happening in West Seattle and other places being built up throughout Seattle. This city and SDOT have done a terrible job handling and upgrading infrastructure of these areas their allowing such build up, doubling population of area in many cases. You can’t keep stuffing  areas with people and think incidents won’t increase . People need ingress egress of these areas whether for work, shopping and so much more. Ever sense SDOT started Vision Zero (I believe it’s called) results have been opposite  of intention,  incidents have risen 150%. You can’t take thruway’s  away with out pushing traffic onto side streets which is already happening in WS. I have seen this personally as one living (35yrs) near junction area. Until better common sense planning including lightning and better  travel surfaces for all modes of transportation I don’t see things getting better. Please before crossing streets make eye contact with vehicle drivers making sure they  you, it’s a simple quick action helping all.

    • anonyme May 7, 2022 (11:01 am)

      Making eye contact in most situations is impossible.  Due to glare on windshields, pedestrians are only looking where they think a face should be.  Drivers, who have a clearer view through the windshield, mistake this for ‘eye contact’.  Not that it matters; I’ve had drivers make eye contact, then floor it.  In many of the arguments that ensued, they shrieked at me that because we’d made eye contact I needed to wait for THEM.   So, not only is there little respect for the law, there are many who don’t even know what it is – especially as it’s not enforced anyway.  There is no magic solution for this problem, but clearly, some stupid signs showing what percentage of drivers stopped for pedestrians the previous week is not the answer.  More controlled crosswalks would help, especially at this intersection (and others). That, and more civility in general.

      • wetone May 7, 2022 (1:18 pm)

        anonyme,  You said “ I’ve had drivers make eye contact, then floor it.  In many of the arguments that ensued, they shrieked at me that because we’d made eye contact I needed to wait for THEM” 

        People need to realize that most all vehicles traveling on road surfaces weigh 4k lbs or more . Traveling even at 20mph on good dry road surface vehicles would have a hard time stopping within 50ft from point of eye contact or a driver seeing person wanting to cross street. Most vehicles these days weigh more and are traveling much faster than 20mph. You also have drivers distracted for so many reasons. These issues will only get worse as streets get impacted more from greenery, darkness from tall buildings and technology distractions. Seattle gov has thrown accountability out the door in this city, so many driving have no license, insurance or even correct license plates….. And I see these issues getting worse, unless city gets more police and they start enforcing current laws by ticketing all law breakers. Camera enforcement will do little as most people breaking laws today could careless or people will say they weren’t driving their vehicle. Ticketing needs to be done in person for quicker more positive results. I will end now by just saying  when I walk or ride my bike I always look out for myself and don’t depend on anything else……….

        • anonyme May 8, 2022 (5:46 am)

          Wetone, I agree with everything you say except for the part about drivers needing more than 50 ft. to stop for a pedestrian (and the eye contact part).  If that were true, no driver would ever be able to stop, suddenly or otherwise.  In the situation I mentioned, the driver had made eye contact, stopped/slowed down, then bolted forward once I began to cross.  Pedestrians can’t just stupidly bolt out into traffic and expect cars to stop, but no matter how perfectly one adheres to the law, common sense, and caution it is still extremely dangerous to cross a street in Seattle – and the onus is on drivers to show that they can safely operate a multi-ton death machine on our residential streets.

          • Rise up May 9, 2022 (3:10 pm)

            What if there was car technology to sense when a person has stepped out in front of a car (like in a cross walk) and it engaged the brakes hard, if car has just started moving from stop or at low speed? Wonder if some new safety technology like this or something else could help.

  • Kim May 7, 2022 (10:15 am)

    Who do we contact to advocate for a stoplight here?  I wrote to Herbold years ago to advocate for one here and they said it was well marked already and not necessary.  Since then, TWO adult neighbors of mine have been hit by cars in the crosswalk.  I’ve witnessed countless near misses, aggressive drivers getting angry when people in front of them stop for pedestrians, and had a driver give me the finger as he drove by while I tried to cross with a large group of elementary students in the morning.  People won’t stop unless there is a stop light.  That stoplight should be all-ways, or at least no turn on red. I’m terrified that a child going to/from school will be next.

    • mehud May 7, 2022 (11:21 am)

      In the middle of the block?

    • Ly May 7, 2022 (11:30 am)

      Kim,If you find out can you let me know? I’m interested in pushing for change because this is ridiculous. We need a stop light. I’m happy to join you and other other community members to push for change.

      • Auntie May 7, 2022 (1:42 pm)

        Try Submit Service Request – Citizen Web Portal (motorolasolutions.com). That is where you can start to bring this to the attention of SDOT. At the same time, email 684-road@seattle.gov, which is SDOT email. Maybe if you can get enough people to do both, you can get their attention. It took 20 years and many, many accidents to get a crossing light put in at 1st & Clay in Belltown when I worked near there. But maybe the fatality here will perk up their ears. We can only hope. Herbold is of no use, near as I can tell.

      • StopCuttingDownTrees May 8, 2022 (1:15 am)

        Stoplights, signage, flashing lights, and crosswalks do absolutely nothing if pedestrians and drivers ignore them.

    • patience May 7, 2022 (2:34 pm)

      @Kim — you asked “Who do we contact to advocate for a stoplight here?”  Where are you talking about putting a stoplight? –> per the article, they were crossing MID-BLOCK.  

      • J May 7, 2022 (4:06 pm)

        Per my eyes they got dropped off from an Uber in the middle lane, the only place to stop on this road. Yes the Uber could have turned to the next right and then they would have walked across the cross walk that may I mention a women got hit a few months ago. Ubers drop off at the location and if your from out of town you may not know where you’re going either. There’s two canna shops across from each other, it’s not dark at all, actually very bright area at night. People park on one side and run across all day long. There needs to be an intersection or something resolved. 

      • Kim May 7, 2022 (9:07 pm)

        I understand that this particular tragedy was not in the crosswalk, but I have seen countless incidents IN the crosswalk as well.  It has needed to be addressed for years.  

  • Neal May 7, 2022 (10:23 am)

    The stretch between Graham and Brandon is like a drivers ed. test everyday. Last week for me in a short 2-3 minutes while coming up north on that stretch, a mother came out into traffic to get into her car, and had a young boy who was on the outside of her IN the traffic lane. Right after that, a man was wanting to cross the road in front of me was dressed in a green camo. jacket and black trousers, standing in the shade.  He was invisible. Right after that, a car ahead of me did the famous 180 degree U-turn out from a parked position. My wife and I have lived here in the Seaview area for over 30 years. I have not had any accidents yet, but I feel I am, statistically speaking, long over due.  We are also regular pedestrians. I usually wear a bright yellow construction jacket when I go out on foot. But again bright colors won’t help if you’re in the shade.  I’ve even had a car back into me once while I was standing  in the Thriftway parking lot. So I have had my share of experiences here.  I do think there are issues for both drivers and pedestrians that should be talked about. Pedestrians often look invisible to drivers, particularly when they are standing in the shade along California. Even wearing bright colors, you will not be seen in the dark. Drivers; many drive very fast up and down California, and some are just poor drivers. We also live close enough to hear the sirens every day coming to the crash scenes. It gets worse as the trees leaf out in the spring like right now.Then we can then throw in more issues like the cramped corner parking, such as at the garden center at Brandon, where the parking rules don’t seem to get enforced very often, the other forms of vehicles like the bikes and the big buses lumbering up and down.I don’t know what the answer is, but this is just a very cramped section of roadway. 

  • Vanessa May 7, 2022 (10:27 am)

    This is so tragic. My condolences to all involved. As drivers and pedestrians, we share the road with so many. As more and more condos and apartments go up too (without adequate parking), it makes it hard on the residents to simply get home from where they park. Please slow down, drivers, and drop off friends and customers on the side where they live. To folks’ credit, cars approaching from both directions stopped so I could cross CA just yesterday. I was so surprised, since it was a busy time of day, but I was carrying a lot and it meant a lot for the 1st person to set that example. Thank you Westies! 

  • Vanessa May 7, 2022 (10:34 am)

    This was so tragic; my condolences to all involved! As drivers and pedestrians, we all share the road with so many. Please let’s: slow down, cross on crosswalks, and be dropped off on the side of the street we live on. As more and more condos/apts replace homes (without adequate parking), jay walking is on the rise, with folks merely trying to get home from wherever they’ve had to park. To whomsoever was the 1st to stop to allow me to cross CA Ave, laden with bags yesterday, thank you! That was generous, and it set an example to the individual approaching from the opposite direction. You might have saved my life. Be well, Westies! 

  • Ray York May 7, 2022 (12:44 pm)

    I am the manager of the Keller Williams office that this occurred in front of. If someone can connect me with a representative of the family, I would appreciate that. I want to provide our agents an opportunity to contribute support, assuming there is a GoFundMe or similar account. Our hearts go out to the victim and their family and friends. Ray York RayYork@KW.com 

    • Jamie May 7, 2022 (3:25 pm)

      Hi Ray. I’m the first home in front of you that witnessed all of this happen, if you find any donation of any kind can you please inform me as well? Thank you. 

    • Rich Hanna May 7, 2022 (4:43 pm)

      This was a coworker of mine. Thanks for your generosity and kind words. I’m watching for a gofundme from his family and once I see one, I’ll post here

      • Jamie May 7, 2022 (7:35 pm)

        Thank you rich. I’ll keep an eye out for it. 

    • Rodney Kei May 9, 2022 (1:12 pm)

      https://gofund.me/7941f5bdLink to his GoFundMe

  • SLJ May 7, 2022 (1:30 pm)

    This is a terrible accident and my condolences to the family involved. But crosswalks and stoplights wouldn’t have made a difference in this case–the pedestrian crossed in the middle of the block. In the dark and rain it would have been very hard to see him. 

  • Millie May 7, 2022 (2:46 pm)

    The truth of the matter is – nothing will resolve speeding, lack of stopping for pedestrians, and so forth if drivers do not engage their brains when behind the wheel of a vehicle (car, bus, van, ……).  I’m still trying to figure out where everyone is rushing to?   Have I missed a memo, text?????

    • Kevin on Delridge May 7, 2022 (5:16 pm)

      This isn’t completely true.

      Two things can resolve speeding where we don’t want it:

      1. Using the infrastructure to make drivers feel unsafe at higher speeds. Narrow lanes, curves, traffic calming, etc.
      2. Fear of damaging their car (speed bumps, etc).

      Drivers do engage their brains when the infrastructure asks them to do so. We know the psychology behind this and we know the solutions. We simply refuse to put it in place because of reactionary citizens and our inability to assess systems.

      On the latter, what I mean is our deep desire to find an individual to blame and considering the matter settled once we can blame someone, rather than assessing how we might prevent it despite individual fault(s). You see that here already with individuals tacitly ascribing blame to the victim rather than considering that we can and do create the conditions for incidents like this (and thus we can change them). This isn’t always the case, but our culture/society isn’t capable of doing this in any meaningful way (that is also on display here).

      We don’t need to rely on tickets or education campaigns, we need to build sensible infrastructure that will produce the outcomes we want.

  • HH May 7, 2022 (4:50 pm)

    I work in the building at 5431 California, right next to the original Canna store.  I see people cross this stretch of road 100 times a day, and I see cars stop for some, but no tall. I wonder since Canna knows their clientele is risking their lives to cross the street, if they can push for a better crosswalk or more street lights in that block. I’ve had to park on the other side of the street numerous times and in the winter when its dark, its like Frogger out there.

  • Tragedy May 7, 2022 (5:19 pm)

    There is certainly a lot of rushed, distracted, and agro driving these days, but accidents do also happen, and could happen to any driver. It could be as simple as dark section of road, rain, a lot of parked cars along the side of the road, and then a driver looking in a mirror for a moment and pedestrians running out in front of them. Not suggesting that’s how it happened here, the driver could have more fault, could have been speeding, impaired, or reckless, but I could also see how even a generally good driver could hit someone under certain circumstances. And, the pedestrians maybe didn’t see the car coming when they rushed out because of parked cars. Let the investigators do their job thoroughly before asusming. Most importantly, let’s all drive a little slower, especially when conditions call for it, and look out for one another. Supportive thoughts to the friends and partner of the victim of this tragedy. You must be heartbroken, so sorry for your loss. Take good care.

  • Smk May 7, 2022 (7:38 pm)

    People drive like maniacs in the Admiral area, near the schools, groceries and parks too. It’s just a matter of time before a pedestrian is injured or killed there as well. What a shame that people won’t simply slow down and pay attention to driving and walking/biking instead of their phones. 

  • Wsresident May 7, 2022 (8:36 pm)

    So sad. Road and crosswalk safety mean nothing when people don’t use them. I see it every single day along Fauntleroy by fairmount for school drop off, how many parents put their little kids in danger crossing mid block. One day the dog was so thick I was going the school zone under 20 and almost couldn’t brake fast enough for a mom and maybe 5 year old. I remember the accident in admiral years ago that seriously injured that gal- same story. Use the crosswalks even if they don’t fell 100% safe they ARE safer than crossing mid block. 

  • Vanessa May 7, 2022 (9:00 pm)

    Just in my opinion and observations, I’ve noticed much more speeding and impatient drivers with the hundreds (thousands) of drivers who are now delivering your lunch, your Amazon packages, your groceries etc etc. This has increased exponentially thru Covid. They don’t live in your neighborhood, and they are in a hurry. Time is money and speed limits be damned. Consider if you’re out after dusk, walk with a flashlight, even using the one on your phone. My most sincere condolences to the family and friends who lost someone last night. 

  • JimK May 7, 2022 (9:51 pm)

    The driver returned to the scene.  Let’s see if they get charged with anything.  It’s possible they could get off since the pedestrian was J -walking.  Too soon the start calling for making changes to the road to make it unsafe to drive.  I use the crosswalk at Findley and Calif every day and I still make sure the cars are coming to a stop before going in front of them and I wave to them when they do.

  • NotOnHolden May 7, 2022 (10:16 pm)

    I’ve almost been hit by turning cars while having a walk signal at 42nd & Oregon, within a crosswalk, but  I’ve had more pedestrians cross midblock on Claifornia between Oregon and the next street north, same when between Hinds & Hanford also it is not teens doing this, it is adults that park on the street and will not walk the 20 or so feet to a protected crosswalk.I am constantly looking out for “squishies” as our local driving school calls them, anyone that had a kid do driver’s ed in the last few years knows this.  All of our cross walks should have user activated lights 100% that needs to happen yesterday.  BUT what about people crossing mid block at no intersection or crosswalk?  The conditions last night were drizzle, rain, dark, and glare.  There are so many factors that led up to this horrible situation that is going to forever change the lives of those involved. FOREVER! Everyone using the roads; cars, bikes, & pedestrians all need to take the time to make sure they are using our resources safely.  This means not speeding (or passing in the oncoming lane this means you vehicle with the personal plate that starts with “HY” or the dude that just held down his horn at 35th & Alaska because I could not see the cars coming up the hill to safely make a right on red, this is coming from someone that would love to play personal autobahn.) this means giving space, this means paying attention, if we all pulled our heads out of our asses for maybe 5 seconds and realize our actions have great impact beyond ourselves, maybe we could avoid where we are right now.Just a few weeks ago I witnessed a person get so frustrated at Alaska & 42nd he drove around a car trying to turn and hauled ass down 42nd where there are quite a few pedestrians.  I was happy to let him know later one of his brake lights was out and that  real people live there, too.  Funny thing is he didn’t drive that aggressively a few blocks from his own home.  We are not islands as pedestrians, bikes, or cars.  We are all here and whether or not we like it, we are in this mess together.

  • Kathy May 7, 2022 (10:41 pm)

    Maybe some street art on California near the intersections would help? How about some botanical street art at Brandon where lots of people are crossing to the Nursery?Pavement art reduces crashes

  • Robert May 8, 2022 (5:25 am)

    Need better lighting along California ave and people should slow down. Seattle Police need to be more aggressive with arresting erratic drivers in West Seattle and you NEVER leave the scene like the driver who hit and killed this man did. Terrible.

  • david May 8, 2022 (12:53 pm)

    Lots of talk here about road diets, lowered speed limits, stop lights, etc.  While these can be helpful, they can also go too far, slowing the flow of traffic to unreasonable levels.  While some people will just trudge along a major thoroughfare forever, some of these traffic slowing techniques create a degree of impatience in others, which is well understood.  Regardless of what you feel about cars, they’re going to be out there, and they need to get where they are going.  There needs to be a balance between the quick and efficient flow of traffic vs safety.  Recently, the city did a lot of work on Delridge to slow traffic, but they went way too far, not properly acknowledging that this is a major thoroughfare that people need.  I’ve seen an uptick in aggressive driving, now that cars are crawling around at 25 mph and through narrow channels.

    • Kevin on Delridge May 9, 2022 (9:30 am)

      Well, if something is a major thoroughfare, maybe we should stop bunching our dense housing and access onto them. Just a thought.

      Traffic slowing =/= traffic congestion.

      The work on Delridge didn’t go far enough. We gave drivers straight and wide lanes (like a highway – north of Orchard at least) and expected them to not speed. The dissonance and subsequent aggression drivers are display is due to the mismatch of the road design and the road expectations. Heck, I feel it when I am driving down Delridge – the design of the road is asking me to move more quickly. It feels uncomfortable slow to go 25MPH. That should be reversed, it should uncomfortable to go faster than 25MPH.

      I can’t help but draw the comparison to an abuser. “You better not try to stop me from speeding, because I will still speed and do it more aggressively.” Delridge is anything but slow these days, there is very little traffic overall (sans garbage days), justifying this behavior suggesting the design went too far is at best holding water for them and at worst actively condoning the aggressive driving.

      I would suggest you study this in greater detail as the conclusions you are drawing are incorrect and will lead to poor outcomes.

      • Rise up May 9, 2022 (2:22 pm)

        I’m not sure I totally follow your logic here, but since you brought up abuse, mostly wanted to say something about that. For victims of actual abuse, not referring to irresponsible or impatient drivers, but actual abuse, want to take a moment to say, Abuse, directed harm and cruelty at another, really sucks. Abuse comes in many forms including, physical, sexual, psychological, intimidation, manipulation, abuse of power, attempts to control and attack others who are vulnerable, especially former victims, etc. To any victims out there who are currently the target of an abuser or bully who won’t stop… When they target you and knock you down, you get back up, even if they attack you for that, and try to silence you when you express yourself, just keep getting back up. They will try to keep you down, destroy your sense of self worth, project wrongness and blame on you… just hold onto the truth, and get back up.

        • Kevin on Delridge May 10, 2022 (9:39 am)

          Thanks speaking about abuse, I appreciate your comments.

          My main point was the language used here is analogous to that of language used to justify abuse or justify inaction from the victim. The implication being you shouldn’t try to stop it because they will do it more and with more intensity – and further that it is your fault the intensity increased for trying to stop/change it.

          To be clear, I was not suggesting abuse itself as equivalent to aggressive driving, just the reasoning used to justify keeping someone from fighting against it.

          • Rise May 11, 2022 (7:56 am)

            Tell me about it.

            What’s even worse, some abusers target their victims online and continue their covert and psychological abuse and engage in smear tactics to further harm their victims.

            Thanks for appreciating my comment, and clarifying your main point.

            To get back to the topic of road safety and dangerous driving, at this point it seems we should have enough experience and data to make the roads and driving much safer (and better for the environment), there seems to be so much room for improvement and for technology innovation, the question coming to my mind is, why isn’t more been done? 

            There could be more traffic calming measures on roadways, improvements for flow and light synchronization, increased infrastructure to support other modes, the creation of new modes more quickly to reduce cars on roads, reduce emissions and toxins, safer crossings for pedestrians, and looking at car designs from perhaps a safety first perspective. 

            However, now we might be getting into some philosophical and political muck… what about the possible infringement on the autonomy and freedoms that people have already enjoyed with cars and driving? And, what about concerns about how all of this change would impact workers and the economy (auto sales, gas sales, etc)?

      • D-Ridge May 9, 2022 (10:13 pm)

        As a resident who lives on Delridge with a toddler I can tell you that the improvements were much appreciated, but did not go far enough. In areas without medians the lanes are still 12’ wide or more, and cars easily speed double the limit. Also, these roads aren’t just “thoroughfares,” they’re were more and more people like my family live. Stop using our road to speed home.

        • alki_2008 May 10, 2022 (11:52 pm)

          I think a lot of the impatience on Delridge is because people are frustrated by the bridge detour. Hopefully, the traffic will calm down a bit when the high bridge opens back up. A lot of drivers seem to be more aggressive than usual around the bridge feeder routes.

          • Rise May 11, 2022 (8:25 am)

            Good point, also everyone has experienced some increase in stress due to the pandemic, too. Stress can impact driving.

    • Kathy May 10, 2022 (8:58 am)

      David, what some drivers consider a reasonable speed behind the wheel of a 2 ton plus vehicle is not a reasonable speed for other street users who are walking and biking. Even if you don’t hit them, you terrorize them when you speed past them or when they try to judge whether it is safe to cross. Mr. Wolf would most likely still be alive if the driver had been obeying the speed limit. The city set the speed limit at 25 to save lives. If drivers blatantly disregard this law, they should do some soul searching. Besides threatening others, most speeders burning fuel are also polluting our air and water and exacerbating climate change more than is necessary to get to their destination. It is getting hard to find people who actually care about these issues on our streets. 

      • Rise May 11, 2022 (8:17 am)

        You raise some good concerns, Kathy, and I hope many do actually care.

        I wonder how much driving related incidents could be reduced just by more people decreasing their stress levels and distractions, and becoming more mindful and aware on the roads.

  • John May 8, 2022 (3:06 pm)

    How long did it take the driver to return? What went on during that time? Did the original driver return, or were they impaired and sent a dutiful sober spouse, to avoid certain prison time? Dark thoughts. I hope justice prevails, whatever the case. So sad for the loss of life. 

    • WSB May 8, 2022 (3:41 pm)

      I don’t know exactly how long but they were back by the time our photographer talked with police there an hour or so after the crash.

      • Rober May 8, 2022 (8:14 pm)

        The police will do their job but the person could have had a sober friend drive the car back to the crime scene. Are Seattle police really that ignorant?

        • WSB May 8, 2022 (9:09 pm)

          I don’t know the specifics (and I’m not sure how much followup information will be available tomorrow but my major question is whether the driver was eventually arrested). It would also be pretty unfathomable for a person to agree in a short span of time to take the fall for a driver who just hit and killed someone, but hey, anything’s possible. However, among other things, there are likely security cameras in the area that might have caught what happened, maybe even showing the driver. I will follow the case as best I can – TR

          • protect women May 8, 2022 (10:56 pm)

            Yes, probably unlikely to have switched drivers, and more likely the driver was in a panic state and didn’t respond appropriately, maybe also terrified to see wh

          • protect women May 8, 2022 (11:09 pm)

            *see the resultant injuries, couldn’t face it?

  • BookGal May 8, 2022 (6:40 pm)

    It is tragic that there was a fatality.
    As a life-long pedestrian, there has been an definite uptick of jaywalking, especially in West Seattle. The worst offenders are parents/guardians with children. (Children learn from the actions of their caregivers). I also constantly witness drivers stopping for jaywalkers! Yet the same drivers will not stop or won’t come to a full stop for a pedestrian legally crossing the street (at a marked or unmarked intersection). Perhaps it is time to bring back ticketing jaywalkers again. 

  • Sweetiebee May 8, 2022 (10:09 pm)

    My deepest condolences. I was just at this intersection Friday, trying to cross the road to get to the nursery. It was shockingly dangerous, I had to go back multiple times after I had started crossinig in the clear, and this was during the day. People were going so fast and had no intentions of slowing down.

  • MrsShaw May 9, 2022 (3:24 pm)

    @ J – you said on May 7th  “Per my eyes they got dropped off from an Uber in the middle lane, the only place to stop on this road.”J,  did you actually see them dropped off by the Uber in the center lane of California Ave SW? How can any Uber/Lyft driver consider the center lane a legitimate drop off point? Not to mention the rain and dark of night. I am so saddened by this terrible accident and I extend deep condolences to the family and friends of the victim. 

  • Kathy May 10, 2022 (3:48 pm)

    In Washington there is the presumption of liability for people riding their bikes > 15 mph on trails. But there is no presumption of liability at all for people driving who injure or kill people walking or biking. The driver does not have to prove that the pedestrian caused the crash to get off the hook. But the injured pedestrian or family of the dead pedestrian have the burden of proof that the driver caused the crash in order to receive a judgement against them. This is an unfair burden on the victims. I would also like to see drivers who cause a fatality by driving  recklessly or impaired be held responsible to support the children of their victims. Lack of any consequences for drivers encourages bad driving behavior. We need to change the laws.

  • M May 12, 2022 (7:52 am)

    Do we have any more information from SPD regarding the circumstances of this crash? Speed, other circumstances? Will we know if there are any charges filed?

  • Ly May 14, 2022 (3:26 pm)

    Blaming on transplants lol. Gimme a break. You long time Washington drivers don’t even know how to put a blinker on ok?

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