Pedestrian struck by dump truck, killed on I-5 in downtown Seattle
SEATTLE – A man was struck and killed by a dump truck Wednesday morning as he tried to run across Interstate 5 in downtown Seattle, the Washington State Patrol reports.
State troopers and medics responded to the scene, on southbound I-5 near Seneca Street, at about 6:50 a.m. after receiving reports of a serious accident. The man died at the scene.
The collision happened at the worst possible time - during the morning commute. Back-ups stretched for miles.
“Where it occurred, it didn’t allow anyone to get on southbound I-90 from I-5,” said Trooper Rock Johnson.
That’s when traffic began to cripple.
“I faced really heavy traffic coming in and it took us an extra 25 minutes to get here than it normally does,” said a healthcare worker who did not want to be identified.
The same thing happened to hundreds of drivers. The I-5 southbound collector-distributor on-ramp from Spring Street was blocked after the crash, causing a 10-mile backup. Traffic quickly came to a crawl from the South end all the way to Snohomish County in less an hour.
“It’s become unbearable – I used to drive all the time,” said the healthcare worker, who now tries to use public transportation as much as she can.
Heavy traffic after a car crash has become all too common for local drivers. More than a year ago, a tanker trucker turned over on I-5 paralyzing traffic across the region. Then more recently a truck spilled wood on the freeway in Seattle snarling traffic.
“I just think we have more humans and more cars,” said Johnson.
The most recent Census says 1,000 people are moving to Seattle every week, putting more vehicle and people on our roads.
“It’s a good thing we have more people here and they’re moving here for the industry and corporations we have but we are feeling the pain with the additional cars on the freeway,” said Johnson.
Witnesses at the scene said the pedestrian was trying to run from one side of the freeway to the other when he was struck by the dump truck. Johnson said it appears the truck driver simply could not avoid hitting the man.
We reached out to WSDOT for an interview on this story. They declined.