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Car strikes pedestrian at 15th and E Denny Way

A car struck a woman crossing the street at 15th Ave and E Denny Way Friday afternoon. The woman in her 30s was taken to the hospital alert and conscious but with serious injuries. A pool of blood and a pile of clothing was being photographed at the scene by SPD investigators.

A drug recognition was called to the scene to evaluate the driver.

The collision happened just before 3p and closed 15th Ave to traffic for 30 minutes as medics and police responded.

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24 thoughts on “Car strikes pedestrian at 15th and E Denny Way

  1. …and man I sure would love to see the occasional bit of traffic enforcement in that whole 14th-16th and Denny-Thomas area. People drive so fast through there, and there are always pedestrians around (not to mention cars coming and going from Safeway and Group Health.)

    Just last night a car speeding up John came up the hill so fast that when he hit the pothole just east of 14th, he bottomed out. Sparks and everything.

    I laughed my ass off.

  2. It’s really an odd corridor. the quietness of the area around it seems to give the illusion of safety, but I do agree with another commentor that people tend to go quite fast around there (I used to live in the building that the photographer was standing in front of in this photo and saw it a lot).

    There are some weird intersections around this area too. The intersection in front of the Hopvine is oddly timed and postioned. The crosswalk Thomas and 15th is a bit wonky. This particular intersection at 15th and Denny is not fun either. Walking, biking, or driving up Denny, there’s a weird curve about 1/4 block west which makes seeing people/cars difficult. On the SW corner, there is also a hedge and a light pole that can obstruct the view of all users. Also, this is just a pet peeve of mine, but this intersection also has those stupid pedestrian buttons. I personally believe those just need to be done away with and have the WALK signal just come on whenever the light is green, like most anywhere else in the city.

    Hope this lady is okay. At least she was in front of a hospital (hopefully they took her to Swedish or Harborview though).

  3. As someone who lives in the neighborhood, I agree that people drive way too fast. 14th on the north side of John is residential, lots of kids, and cars go way too fast. Remember, pedestrians have the right of way at crosswalks, marked or unmarked.

  4. It’s bad enough that people don’t pay attention to crosswalks, but I bet most people don’t even know what an “unmarked crosswalk” is.

  5. Being someone who has been hit by a car on 15th – while wearing a red jacket and in the crosswalk at pine, it seems people are just not paying attention.

  6. I hope she’s OK too. At least the driver didn’t speed off afterward, it sounds like.

    As a new-ish and so-far carless citizen, I’ve definitely noticed an aggressiveness and lack of mindfulness on the part of drivers here. Already had to do a few “I’m walkin’ heres” a la Ratso Rizzo, and people will nudge right up on you like they have the right of way when you use stoplight crosswalks and so forth. It’s a driving culture up here; I hope that can slowly change as things densify and more jerks like me move here.

  7. Being only a pedestrian, I am very careful especially when crossing trouble spots (10th & Aloha, even with crosswalk signs!) but even as careful as I am, this is one of my biggest fears.

    Drivers, please try to be more careful. Wave pedestrians on if you are the only car, let them know that you see them and that you are waiting for them! But if there are multiple cars, don’t wave them as who knows what the other cars will do!

    When turning, please please please slow down. I’ve seen so many close calls with drivers turning too fast and not watching for pededstrians already crossing or about to cross.

    (And pedestrians, I know most of us are careful, but never dart out and wait for a car if need be. The car will take you out, not the other way around.)

  8. As someone who is primarily a walker and cyclist, getting hit by a car is one of my fears. Yesterday, however, I was driving, and cruised right past this scene and didn’t know what was happening. I sincerely hope the woman is doing OK and on the mend.

    But when I was driving yesterday, I was astounded at how many pedestrians, especially along 12th and 15th, walked out in front of my car. (I’m not saying this particular accident is in ANY way the woman’s fault, but this happened with such frequency to me yesterday that I even mentioned it to my husband later last night and told him I sticking to cycling!) In my experience, many pedestrians didn’t even pause or look both ways at the corner, just plowed into traffic assuming I would see them. I had to abruptly hit my brakes three times along 12th and 15th, not because I was going fast but because pedestrians were just quickly walking out from blind spots into traffic. After two hours worth of errands, I was frazzled, paranoid and driving about 10 miles an hour.

    Please: I’m in no way saying that this woman walking into traffic. Drivers are far more aggressive than pedestrians and that is most likely the case here. But I hope that people understand that the area is getting more and more congested, people are much more aggressive, and pedestrians, drivers and cyclists all need to be much more careful. Everyone should commute on the defensive, and look out for themselves.

    My thoughts are with this woman and I hope she has a peaceful and speedy recovery.

  9. I don’t drive often, but when I do, I find 12th and 15th similarly harrowing for pedestrians walking out. (Also that stretch of Olive that curves as it goes down the hill). I try to keep that in mind when I’m walking (which is the vast majority of the time.)

    I definitely think the majority of responsibility is and ought to be on the person piloting 4000+ pounds of fast-moving metal, but pedestrians and cyclists HAVE to take responsibility for their own safety, too, if for no other reason than that whole right of way thing won’t help you when you’re dead.

  10. In the car vs. pedestrian vs. bicycle wars I think many thoughts. Among them.
    * Every person needs to be aware and accountable for their own ass.
    * Every person needs to be aware and accountable for others’ asses.

    Compared to cities around the world, Seattle pedestrians got it pretty damned good. Much of the time if you’re walking unaware and near a corner people here may slow down and even stop rather than hit you. In a lot of other cities you step off that curb and you’re squashed. The thing is, though, that in these other cities everyone is paying attention as if their and others’ lives depended on it! In a lot of the US and in Seattle people are always doing something in addition to driving, cycling, walking. The multi-tasking thing don’t work.

  11. The cars pulling out of the Group Health parking lot can be very aggressive at times, especially at that time of day.

    And, part of the problem is, cars going south on 15th start speeding up after the stop/start traffic through the business/commercial section of the street to make up for “lost” time.

  12. My guess is that the majority of posters in this thread have never been outside of King County.

    Seattle drivers are about as polite and non aggressive as you’ll ever come upon. Go with your “I’m walking here attitude” to a city outside of the PNW and you’ll end up dead within a month.

  13. I’ve lived and walked in cities on both coasts and in the middle of this country, as well as in Europe, and Seattle drivers are the most self-centered and oblivious that I’ve encountered.

  14. I agree that Seattle drivers are oblivious. My experience from across the North and Central America, Europe, and Asia is that if pedestrians there were as oblivious as pedestrians here they would all be made dead. Drivers elsewhere may pay better attention to their surroundings but they still seem to own the roads and don’t like to slow down, stop, or swerve “unnecessarily”.

  15. Why do you consider 10th & Aloha a “trouble spot?” There is a traffic light there, with of course walk/don’t walk signals, and it is well-lit at night. I walk by there frequently and have never had a problem…but then I am one to respect traffic signals (usually!).

  16. Interesting. I’m from Southern California and my impression is that drivers here are almost annoyingly polite. Every time I visit my parents in Orange Vounty, I am struck by how awful walking anywhere there is – even from you car in the parking lot to the door of the grocery store. More often than not people would speed up and cut me off, so they didn’t have to wait five seconds for me to cross in front of them.

    Of course, I’ve noticed that some streets are worse than others here. High traffic streets are very hard to cross, but that’snprobably true of any city in the US.

    Also, stories like this remind me of the statistic that people in crosswalks are much more likely to be hit than someone who is jaywalking. Safety is more bout paying attention than slavishly following the law. It also reminds me that pedestrians are by far the most at risk road users in the country. Be careful out there!

  17. Cars turning too fast and not looking for pedestrians despite a walk sign. Plus the power poles are large enough to obscure a pedestrian just starting out in the crosswalk. I’ve seen many near misses (and few none-misses between two cars turning.)

  18. Notice that the streets you are talking about are all arterial streets with irregular controlled intersections and minimal infrastructure at uncontrolled intersections (not even paint most of the time). The arterials in this neighborhood are so dangerous and obviously focused on moving cars, it’s astonishing more people don’t get hit.