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Pedestrian hit by driver at Denny and Bellevue

(Image: SDOT)

(Image: SDOT)

A person crossing the street near Denny and Bellevue was struck by a driver and sent to the hospital after being thrown to the pavement Tuesday night.

First responders arrived at the corner on Denny’s steep climb just before 9:30 PM to find a female pedestrian down on the pavement after being struck at the busy intersection.

The female victim was first reported to have suffered serious injuries prompting a large emergency response but a SFD spokesperson said she was hurt less seriously than first thought, characterizing her injuries as “minor” — though the woman’s injuries were serious enough to require treatment at Harborview.

Seattle Police officers were at the scene to assist with traffic and investigate the crash. Denny was closed in both directions during the response. We’ve asked SPD for any details on the investigation and will update if we learn more about the incident.

UPDATE: CHS has confirmed that two people walking together were struck in the collision. We’re told both were injured in the crash but fortunately only one required a trip to the emergency room.

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29 thoughts on “Pedestrian hit by driver at Denny and Bellevue

  1. I live a block from there on Bellevue. That intersection is dangerous. Cars go way too fast on Denny, especially uphill, and have limited visibility due to the slope.

    Also, the crossing signal for Bellevue crossing Denny is extremely short, and takes forever to change if you miss it. So you see a lot of people run to beat the light, which has led to close calls with cars making turns.

    • There wouldn’t be any close calls if pedestrians respected the “don’t walk” signal, thereby allowing cars to turn safely.

      • Having a walk signal that is reasonably long and frequent for an extremely pedestrian-heavy intersection might not be such a bad idea, either.

      • I agree. The problem is that Denny’s traffic is already very congested, with long backups at times, so your suggestion would just make this worse.

    • I second that! I struggled to do it when I was recovering from an ankle injury and have noticed some elderly residents just barely making it across before the light changed.

      I hope the woman is okay.

  2. Scary intersection. I live just north of it on Bellevue. I worry about the few elderly people that live in my building crossing it. People run the light all the time. I’ve almost been hit – in the intersection with the walk light – more than a few times. Drivers need to slow down and look.

    • yeah, but i’ve also seen my fair share of pedestrians (people who look to be in their twenties) walking against the light, no sign or desire to hurry across, causing traffic to slam on their brakes or swerve.

      it is a scary intersection and all need to treat it with more respect.

      • Car violence apologists aside, SDOT data simply does not account for the number of near-misses we know are occurring at intersections like this. This is treated as a freeway. It needs to stop. This is where we live.

      • Agreed. I’ve seen drivers coming up Denny from SLU going what I’d guess to be 50 mph while I was waiting for the light to change. I’m really surprised there aren’t more incidents.

      • I think what you describe is very uncommon. Why? Denny eastbound is very steep, often congested, and there are 3 lights in a short distance (Melrose, Bellevue, E Olive Way)….pretty hard to speed with those factors in play.

      • So how many members of YOUR family are OK to have injured and mowed down by cars? 5? 3?

        It’s OK if someone permanently maims your husband or wife – that’s just one collision, so it’s OK with you too, right?

        The acceptable number is, of course, zero.

        Most collisions in Seattle (esp. the fatal ones) are preventable through known and cost-effective street design and enforcement interventions that Seattle simply doesn’t do.

        I think it’s insulting to the (completely preventable) victims of car crashes to suggest that any level of preventable traffic violence is acceptable.

      • While I agree with you that in an ideal world there is no injuries to anyone ever. I live in reality and accidents happen. A conservative estimate puts the number of cars to go through that intersection at 5,000 a day. Multiplied over the 7 years you talk about gives you 12,775,000 cars to use that intersection. Factoring in the 5 accidents you mention, gives you an accident rate of 0.00000039%. That is pretty damn close to zero. Even if you change the number of cars to an unrealistic 1,000 the accident percentage is still only 0.00000196.

      • The problem with your analysis is you’re not looking at peer cities to ask what is an appropriate baseline.

        In general, US cities tend to rival former soviet socialist republics in crash fatality/serious injury (not “accident” — which jseattle is smart to avoid) rates.

        If that’s your idea of success, well, enjoy.

        The toxic and incorrect idea that “accidents happen”, socialized and marketed by the auto industry to avoid liability, is the root cause of why so many Americans are killed by cars vs. other first-world countries.

      • Also, the 5 number is just the number of pedestrians hit by cars.

        That’s obviously a subset of the collisions. It omits cars hit by cars, bicyclists hit by cars, let alone pedestrians & cars who didn’t report the collision.

      • These are not accidents, they are collisions between drivers equipped with 2 ton vehicle and a single individual walking and usually with the right of way. .00000039 is not zero.

      • “The problem with your analysis is you’re not looking at peer cities to ask what is an appropriate baseline.”

        OK, sure. But that lack of data point isn’t stopping you from flying off the handle about the high number of accidents. What is the baseline?

        Though it offers no comfort to those who’ve been in accidents, you’re probably as likely to die from slipping on the sidewalk and cracking your head open as you are from being hit in this intersection.

        Others have posited that anything above 0 is unacceptable, so should we pave the sidewalks in spongy material? Should everyone be mandated to wear helmets and neck protection?

      • My analysis is coming from a person who was RUN OVER by a Suburban while riding a bike. I spent 7 months in and out of various casts after having surgery to repair my body. I understand better than most how traumatic and horrible these situations are. The driver in my ACCIDENT was at fault, but she didn’t intentionally run me over.

        Definition of Accident
        an undesirable or unfortunate happening that occurs unintentionally and usually results in harm, injury, damage, or loss; casualty; mishap:

        Reality is that bad shit happens. Life is unfair and there is no way around that. Should we try and make things better? Of course we should! But at the end of the day, that intersection isn’t this death trap that you are trying to make it out to be. In my humble opinion, there are many more pressing concerns in this city other than the intersection of Denny and Bellevue. Which I live 2 blocks from and cross at least twice a day on my way to and from work.

        As far as your assessment that I’m not looking at “peer cities”, you are entirely correct. I would love to hear more about this via some stats, or even better, a link to actual data. Help educate those of us who don’t know as much as you. Until you provide that, you’re just a passionate person whining on a blog.

  3. One thing that has always amazed me is that, north of Denny, there is not one marked crosswalk on Bellevue Ave E, an arterial which is densely populated and on which cars go way too fast. I wonder what unfortunate event would prompt action on the part of the city. It’s way past time.

    • I have read that marked crosswalks are often less safe than unmarked crosswalks. The theory being that the marked crosswalks lead pedestrians to think that they are safe and that cars with more likely stop for them, without any corresponding change in driver behavior.

  4. That is MY DAUGHTER who was hit while crossing the street with the right of way. She’s
    quite injured, thanks. What if it was your loved one…? No excuses for a car hitting a pedestrian EVER.