Driver cited for DUI in collision that left Zipcar upside down on E Madison

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Thanks to @nursebeckus for the picture

A driver with a blood alcohol level more than two and a half times the legal limit flipped the Zipcar he was driving after hitting another vehicle early Saturday morning near E Madison and 14th Ave.

There were no significant injuries in the crash. No additional details of how the car ended up on its roof were available.

CHS reported on the crash over the weekend but details of the arrest and the DUI citation have now been released.

According to the SPD report on the incident, police arrived on the scene just before 3 AM in time to see a man crawling out of the driver’s seat of the blue car on its roof in the middle of the eastbound lanes of E Madison. Police noted a strong smell of alcohol on the driver’s breath, his “red, bloodshot and watery” eyes and that he seemed to have difficulty speaking and standing without swaying. The driver admitted he was “a little buzzed” and that he had been drinking beer and cocktails for hours at nearby Neighbours.

After a series of sobriety tests at the scene, police arrested the man and took him to East Precinct where a blood alcohol test was administered. In two tests, the arrested driver registered a reading of .196 and .198. He was cited for DUI before being released to be taken to the county sobering center. Upon release, the man said that his head hurt and he was transported to Harborview for further evaluation and medical treatment.

Washington’s current state limit for drunk driving is 0.08 for adults. The National Transportation Safety Board this week released a plan to further reduce federal legal limits for drunk driving to 0.05.

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9 thoughts on “Driver cited for DUI in collision that left Zipcar upside down on E Madison

  1. I’m really surprised someone would drink and drive with a car sharing automobile. I think this is the second time it’s happened in the neighborhood.

    • It’s obviously not an excuse for drunk driving (because there is none), but I can see a scenario where a person:
      1. Drives a ZipCar out to a bar
      2. Drinks more than planned
      3. Chooses a drunk drive home instead of a hefty ZipCar charge for leaving the car overnight

      The ZipCar charge is not a concern if it’s your own car and you can cab home and pick it up the next day. Again, not an excuse, but maybe the thought process of a drunk ZipCar user.

      • I feel like it’s a strange thing to have used a car sharing service to go to a bar. You’re paying by the hour why you’re drinking.

  2. If I’m not mistaken, that’s the Audi A3 named “Alonzo.” And he crashed literally right next to where you return it. You killed Alonzo, you drunk bastard!

    • I saw Alonzo safe and parked at 14th and Union, so this must have been one of his unlucky cousins.

      Sounds like an expensive night – wasting Zip time drinking at the bar and then totaling it. This is definitely a simple way to be blacklisted from Zipcar forever into eternity.

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