Semi strikes wheelchair, man sent to hospital with ‘substantial’ injuries

A man crossing at 12th and Cherry in his wheelchair was struck by a semi-truck early Friday morning and sent to the hospital with significant injuries, according to the SPD brief on the incident. Police say they stopped the truck driving away from the 1a collision and found the man’s wheelchair wedged beneath the truck. Police say the investigation into the incident continues but the driver showed no signs of impairment at the scene and was not arrested.

Semi truck strikes man in wheel chair
Just shortly after 1:00 a.m. this morning an unmarked SPD detective unit onviewed an adult male double amputee lying in the intersection of 12 Av/E Cherry St. (previous condition, not a result of this collision) At the same time, they noticed a semi truck travelling west on E. Cherry St away from the male.

The detectives stopped the semi truck at Broadway Av/E Cherry St and located a wheelchair underneath the front portion of the semi truck. It is believed the male in the wheelchair was crossing north to south in the marked crosswalk at 12 Av/E Cherry St and was struck by the semi truck.

The 50-year-old male pedestrian was treated on scene by Seattle Fire Department and transported to Harborview Medical Center via Medics with substantial injuries.

The 33-year-old male truck driver was evaluated on scene by a Drug Recognition Expert unit, no signs of impairment were detected.

Traffic Collision Investigators responded and processed the scene. The investigation continues.

14 thoughts on “Semi strikes wheelchair, man sent to hospital with ‘substantial’ injuries

  1. Jesus. Why again are huge semis allowed to drive in our neighborhoods? Many European cities have size restrictions on vehicles in dense areas. There is a such thing as safer, smaller cargo vans/vehicles.

  2. I see “truck route” signs on 23rd, leading me to believe that there are some laws or guiding regulations. I would like to better understand what they are.

  3. Correct me if I’m wrong, but whether or not the driver is impaired is unimportant when it’s a hit and run…. why in the world was the driver let go?

  4. It doesn’t say that he was let go, just that he was not impaired. I hope he was taken in!

    Yesterday I was diving up Lake WA Blvd heading towards the Arboretum behind a huge truck with a wide load carrying a bulldozer. We’re going up these tiny curvy roads at about 3 miles per hour. How is this allowed! This truck never should have been able to use this road. It’s bad enough trying to get around the bikes.

  5. They are not allowed but it is not enforced here like always. Try driving a semi through Wallingford.

  6. The article says he was not arrested….

    As far as Lk WA Blvd goes – anyone who chooses that road shouldn’t expect it to be a short cut…. It’s a park for crissake, it’s only 25mph anyway. You feel itch to have to get around anyone don’t go through there.

  7. Before we judge the driver. Let’s consider that their may be other issues in play. Here’s a scenario that allows for an innocent driver.

    1. It is dark and raining. Driver pulls up to a stop behind traffic. An onfortunate fellow in a wheel chair wants to cross the street to catch a bus and doesn’t have time to go to the intersection which is 30 feet away. He is impared by the pain medications and not very strong. So he makes a go of it. But he gets stuck in a pot hole. He is right in front of the truck. The truck driver can’t see down directly in front of the truck, and there was nothing there a few seconds ago anyway. The light turns green, the cars in front of him move. He lets out the clutch and the truck shudders forward. He immediately goes for second gear, shudder rattle, then third gear, 4th, 5th. He is still only going 15 miles an hour as he moves through the intersection, truck shuddering with each shift and each pot hole. Nothing unusual to note other than a detectives car stops him.

    They get out and look. Find the wheel chair. The driver is mortified. He has no idea what happened.

    This is the truck he is given. He opperated it safely within all the limits of the law. Only the victim violated the law.

    Just a thought. Bet that’s about what the police thought as well. Let’s try not to judge until we know what happened. And don’t forget, I’ve said the same thing about Patterson, other gangsters, and Zimmerman.

    This rush to judgement results in animosity and predjudice. Let’s get the facts and act righteously.

  8. Yes. Strict liability should apply. The Wheel chair rider must pay for any damages to the truck and anguish caused to the driver plus punative damages. It is inherently dangerous, reckless, and unlawful to cross between traffic between intersection on a dark and rainy morning, especially when one is riding low to the ground, slowly, uncertainly and with a realistic expectation of not being able to finish the crossing. If my scenario is correct – then the wheel chair rider is strickly liable, simply and obviously liable.

    Trucks are a reality of the modern world. In spite of notations above, Europeans, Asians, Communists, Even Pacific Islanders use large trucks. There are some limitations in most cities including Seattle, however, virtually no city or country would restrict use of trucks on 23rd or many of it’s major cross streets. There are gas stations and tankers, grocery stores and refer trucks, bars and keg trucks. Thinking the driver did anything wrong in the scenario I postulate is silly. And again – a knee jerk rash to judgement typical in a nationalist socialist brutalist society that thinks they can set draconian standards for everyone else.

    Wait to find out what really happened before convicting one of our neighbors who was trying to make a buck delivering Fritos at 0500. Must we hate everyone who has a job?

  9. No doubt, a park and a bike route. What a tool, bikes have every right to the road.
    KOMO states the guy in the wheelchair was crossing against the light and the truck driver stopped immediately to render assistance. When I first read this earlier on KOMO, I thought it was just a case of jaywalking gone bad.

  10. 1.) If we didn’t have trucks, we couldn’t have supermarkets. You can get on your high horse about farmers markets, etc, but supermarkets are what 99.9% of people in cities depend on for food, so that’s a stupid (and pretentious) argument.

    2.) Despite what the European name droppers might say, we have regulations on large trucks – which is why this truck was out at one am, not one pm.

    3.) Having a disability doesn’t make you less human. You can be a jerk, a drunk, or just plain spacey. I don’t know what was going on in this guy’ head, but you don’t either. Stop condescending to the disabled.,

  11. Yes, no one ever drives a semi in Wallingford. No one ever moves in or out of houses, no stores get deliveries. It just doesn’t happen. It’s only here in the containment zone where we might see a truck.

    Don’t you ever eat tired of finding ways to be a victim, eyes? I can see why you don’t move. What would you do for a hobby if you lived in West Seattle or Ballard?

  12. I have to agree, the “this is the way they do it in Europe” whine is a bit tedious and ridiculous. As if nobody’s ever seen “no trucks” signs? Or “no trucks over (x) tons”? And neither 12th nor Cherry is a small and narrow street anyway.

  13. The police report certainly doesn’t make it sound like the driver stopped and rendered assistance….. he drove for several blocks (oblivious or uncaring?) until a cop stopped him and found the wheelchair wedged in his truck by that story. Doesn’t sound at all like rendering assistance to me. Somehow I’m more willing to believe the police report – by someone who was there firsthand, than a reporter at KOMO.