UPDATE: Driver rescued after vehicle goes into water off Alki Avenue (remaining ‘beached’ Saturday evening)

12:16 AM: 911 is reporting multiple calls about a car into the water off the 1200 block of Alki Avenue SW [map]. Police are just arriving and SFD is on the way. A person is reported to be “standing atop the sinking vehicle.” Updates to come.

(Photo sent by Lynn Hall)

12:25 AM: So far responders on scene say it appears the driver was alone in the car and is indeed out. This is now said to be in the 1100 block of Alki. Police are blocking off the street both ways in that area.

12:31 AM: Firefighters have reported one person “extricated” and we’re not sure if that’s a reference to the driver or another person.

12:47 AM: Both SFD and SPD say just one person was rescued, the driver, who is reported to have only minor injuries. (Added: SFD says the driver is a man in his early 20s.)

12:52 AM: Police told dispatch they’re reopening Alki Avenue both ways.

ADDED 10:40 AM: Thanks to Janna for sending this video – the car is still submerged:

She says it’s a Nissan Versa. High tide was just over an hour ago; the next low tide is -0.2 at 4:41 pm.

12:06 PM: Charlotte Starck of the Alki Community Council reports city Park Rangers are at the scene.

(added) Another photo from Charlotte shows an apparent tire track, and a perspective of the scene, west of Luna/Anchor Park:

2:34 PM: Just heard over police radio … “The car … is now beached.” A texter sent this photo:

9:29 PM: Still there at sunset – Bob Spears sent this photo:

10:30 AM SUNDAY: Just pulled out – followup here.

42 Replies to "UPDATE: Driver rescued after vehicle goes into water off Alki Avenue (remaining 'beached' Saturday evening)"

  • Pinto March 16, 2024 (7:15 am)

    Maybe they should add some speed bumps and cameras – but from what I understand the more critical issue is the abundance of parking at constellation park.

  • Marcus March 16, 2024 (7:27 am)

    Can we hope that this will be a life changing lesson for this individual?  

  • Thomas March 16, 2024 (8:11 am)

    I don’t get it!.so many accidents on Alki Had to be going at a high rate of speed or intoxicated

  • Daniel March 16, 2024 (9:10 am)

    That explains all the sirens, wow that’s wild.  Any details on how the car ended up in the water in the first place?  1100 is right near Duwamish head, yea?

    • R March 16, 2024 (10:20 am)

      Yep! Just slightly SW it seems (per the map link). I also am curious how this happens, because its more frequent than I ever would have guessed. Isn’t this the second or third time this year (not counting the collision that happened last fall) someone has wound up in the drink?Intoxication? Swerving to avoid someone? Distracted driving, maybe. Its interesting that it seems to happen more around the Duwamish head, a rather immeadiate tuen if you’re not paying attention. I’ve never heard of someone accidentally driving in the beach…

      • WSB March 16, 2024 (11:01 am)

        This is the first crash-into-water since the one last July in which a young woman was rescued by bystanders. There was an incident last January called in as a car in water that turned out to be nighttime swimmers.

        • Rod March 16, 2024 (12:07 pm)

          Any update on the July car knocked over the side?  I recall the lady victim was in a coma and no word on the perp who hit her  

          • WSB March 16, 2024 (12:55 pm)

            She eventually went home to continue rehab, according to updates on her GoFundMe page. We continue checking in the court system and to date no charges were filed. Doesn’t mean they never will be.

    • Judy Thomas March 16, 2024 (11:10 am)

      It’s still there!

      • WSB March 16, 2024 (11:39 am)

        We added reader video showing that earlier this morning. If they’re waiting till low tide, it doesn’t bottom out until 4:41 pm.

  • WSLUV March 16, 2024 (11:22 am)

    @wsb – Thanks for the map link!  It makes it much more contextual, and quick to look up the general area.

  • Tougher DUI laws NOW March 16, 2024 (2:29 pm)

    It’s a shame that Olympia failed to pass the bill to lower the blood alcohol threshold for DUI from .08 to point .05, again.

    • Jay March 16, 2024 (5:54 pm)

      The issue isn’t the threshold, it’s that there’s a massive backlog of DUI cases so prosecution is pushed back a year or more or not enforced at all. The statute of limitations on DUI in Washington is two years, and I’ll bet DUI attorneys can get cases thrown out much sooner than that.

    • . March 16, 2024 (6:53 pm)

      None of these drivers in DUI collisions are even close to .08, they’re usually multiples over. Lowering it to .05 is just virtue signaling. 

      • Tougher DUI laws NOW March 16, 2024 (10:06 pm)

        .05 would get more drunks to spend a night in jail, cost them roughly $5000, raise their insurance rates, etc, BEFORE they cause a deadly collision.

        • WS Res March 17, 2024 (9:57 am)

          The people between .05 and .08 aren’t the ones driving off embankments and killing people. And if DUI prosecution is backed up for years, how is adding MORE people to prosecute going to do anything?

          • Tougher DUI laws NOW March 17, 2024 (12:22 pm)

            Increase the fines for DUI to pay for more DUI prosecutors and court access. If .05 saves ONE life it’s worth it.

          • Edgar March 17, 2024 (8:40 pm)

            0.5 is dumb IMO. There’s no stats to back up any of these safety assertions. That is a slippery slope argument. Total ban on cars would also reduce deaths by more than one 🙄 for sure. So far SDOT calming efforts include speed bumps, closed streets and lowered speed limits that do little more than make it harder to get around the city. Meanwhile dangerous drivers are zooming around at high rates of speed, weaving in and out of traffic, running lights, rolling through stop signs, driving recklessly with no traffic enforcement at all. Tougher rules? How about we enforce the ones we have. 

      • WS Res March 17, 2024 (4:13 pm)

        Please post any evidence you have of fatal DUIs where the driver was between .05 and .08. 

  • Actually Mike March 16, 2024 (3:30 pm)

    Uhm, do kids take Driver’s Training these days? Just asking, because I distinctly recall when I was starting out, Mr. Drew put it into plain English for us: If you can’t swim, or even if you can? DON’T DRIVE OFF THE SEAWALL INTO ELLIOTT BAY! Remember that like it was just yesterday. Sorta seems like some of these young ‘uns didn’t get that explained to ’em. Which is kinda scary–both that they’d NEED someone to explain it, and that apparently nobody did. Of course, spending the night in salt water means all kinds of parts and systems are completely ruined on that car now. It’s gotta be totalled. But it’s good that they at least got the young man out of there.  And his car too. Good grief.

    • bolo March 17, 2024 (10:21 am)

      Not the same these days, different from your described experience. Drivers education has all been outsourced now and with predictable results. Many schools are just paper mills.

    • Citizen Sane March 17, 2024 (11:17 am)

      I don’t think it’s a question of Driver’s Ed courses. I think it’s the result of a society that increasingly refuses to enforce its own rules. If you believe the odds of being caught are low, and the consequences if you are caught minimal, you have little motivation to self-regulate your behavior.Seattle needs to be a bit more Singapore and a lot less WokeWorld.

  • Terry March 16, 2024 (4:14 pm)

    And…… we’re off! 🌞 ⛱️ 

  • Visitor March 16, 2024 (4:41 pm)

    I wonder how much stuff in a car is toxic to marine life..Nobody seems to be in a real big hurry to get it out. 

  • PL March 16, 2024 (5:42 pm)

    Frankly, this comes as no great surprise to me.  I live in an apartment nearby, and the sounds of engines being gunned, tires screeching, and music turned up to high volume are par for the course along here from midnight to as late (early) as 3 a.m.  I’m just surprised accidents don’t happen more frequently.  The police are reasonably good about coming by between 11 and 11:30 pm and letting the partiers/racers know the angle-parking area is closed at 11:30, but I’m sure they don’t have enough patrol officers to maintain a constant presence; the scofflaws disperse but return within an hour.  I figure sooner or later someone is going to get killed one way or another.

  • LGO March 16, 2024 (7:14 pm)

    I hope they have to pay the water pollution fine that us boaters have to have insurance for. 

    • John March 16, 2024 (8:42 pm)

      Yeah I was wondering about that as well and I think they should also fine them for the cost of fixing the grass where they left a tire mark through it

      • Alki resident March 16, 2024 (10:22 pm)

        Because that lawn is so plush right?

  • Concerned Westsider March 16, 2024 (9:39 pm)

    Surprised it hasn’t been mentioned that maybe the vehicles entering the water at high speed might be people battling severe mental health issues… Very quick to assume it’s alcohol related etc. based on these comments. Wishing peace for this individual, no matter what circumstances led to this. 

  • Dog Whisperer March 16, 2024 (10:23 pm)

    Speed bumps should be continued West from anchor park. Without any traffic control it’s the only way to slow down the reckless. 

    • Brian March 17, 2024 (8:30 am)

      If someone is drunk and driving down Alki in a reckless manner, speed bumps are not going to do a thing to help that. 

    • MD March 17, 2024 (3:21 pm)

      I don’t think any number of speed bumps is going to stop this person. Look at all the bumps they bypassed to get where they landed. It took an estuary to stop them.

  • Ly March 17, 2024 (12:44 am)

    As soon as weather gets a bit nice we see these nonsense happening up and down Alki, Beach Drive etc. People don’t have self control, and then lack of enforcement. Not sure anything will change. Can’t wait for summer. Pfft. 

  • Alki Jack March 17, 2024 (7:53 am)

    Dog Whisperer, you are absolutely correct. Why the speed bumps were not continued baffles me. There are not enough police officers to control the speeding, loud exhaust, extremely loud music etc. The speed limit is 25MPH, you can’t jump the curb, cross the bike path and sidewalk and end up that far pass the big rocks and end up in the sand, at 25 MPH. Police have tools that can estimate the vehicles speed. 

    • learnFromLondonOrParis April 4, 2024 (10:28 am)

      They also have the tools to detect excessive noise and illegal exhausts. When are they actually going to enforce the law? If there is no enforcement, can we get automated systems?

  • ICU March 17, 2024 (8:57 am)

    The speed bumps only create alternate driving techniques for speeders and car groups. Noticed driving change is added adrenaline between bumps followed by the increased use of gas pedal and mufflers once through. Cars/trucks have figured out crossing speed bumps without much slowing. The current Harbor Ave changes are a C- for results.

  • Mr. Henery March 17, 2024 (10:30 am)

    Car out of water on flatbed truck being hauled away.  Great job by SPD Divers and truck crew

  • Alki Jack March 17, 2024 (11:21 am)

    ICU, the speed bumps may have had brought on some new problems, but how would having no speed bumps at all would be better to slow traffic down? The answer is simple. The city doesn’t have enough police officers to be there all the time. But I haven’t seen ANYONE pulled over in years. If the police could just be there once in a while, doing emphasis patrol, so the speeders would never know when they might be there. Just luckily nobody was riding a bike or a couple out for a walk on the sidewalk.

  • Grilled Cheese March 17, 2024 (1:42 pm)

    Just like the movies. He must have been booking it to clear the rocks. Exciting times in WS. 

  • EricS March 17, 2024 (9:00 pm)

    Simple solution: DO NOT DRIVE WHILE WASTED. 

  • BEAUTIFUL SUNSET March 17, 2024 (10:15 pm)

    the sunset photo is leaving my breathless.. from laughter. 

Sorry, comment time is over.