car accident

Photo courtesy of Kiro

Late Night Car Accident Pile-Up

A multi-car accident happened late Sunday night near Everett. State troopers and medics were called to an accident in the southbound lanes near Highway 2, after reports of a serious crash, involving several vehicles and a semi-truck.

A 57-year-old woman died at the scene of the crash.  She was in the first car of the wreck. A preliminary investigation shows that the collision may been caused by a disabled vehicle, possibly parked on the shoulder, of the freeway. Two other cars crashed into the deceased woman’s car, injuring at least another 3 people.

After the initial crash, the disabled vehicles were then hit again, by three additional cars and a semi-truck.  All traffic was detoured onto another state route and the fatality investigation crew closed the roadway for almost 5 hours. The highway was opened early Monday morning.

“Shoulder of the Road” Car Accident

When you think of car accidents, especially deadly ones, “shoulder of the road” accidents are not likely the first thing to come to mind. But in truth, they are very common, accounting for a large percentage of automobile injuries and fatalities every year, as, unfortunately, this multi-car wreck in Everett shows.

The shoulder of the road is generally a paved or soft easement where ailing vehicles can withdraw from traffic to in an emergency, until assistance from local highway patrol or towing, is available to help. In poor weather, with flat tires, or just simply out of gas, the easement can seem like a lifesaver in a pinch. But it’s important for drivers to remember that they do not assure safety or protection from the hazards of busy interstates and roadways.

Prevent a Car Accident when Broken Down

If you have vehicle issues while driving and need to move off the road, it is vital that your vehicle is entirely out of the lane of travel. Leaving any part of your vehicle in the road increases the possibility of another car hitting you from behind, or resulting in other potentially catastrophic situations. While any kind of collision is dangerous, a compromised vehicle is particularly vulnerable in unsafe and volatile locations, like the shoulder or easement of busy roads.

Safety Tips When Broken Down:

  • It is strongly recommended that emergency hazard lights are turned on, day or night, to warn other drivers that there are problems. Flashing lights will warn on-coming drivers to give a safety berth around you, hopefully moving to another lane, to ensure no close-calls or near-misses. Forgetting to properly indicate the situation to oncoming traffic can cause accidents.
  • If you need to exit the vehicle, consider going through the passenger side or wait until there is no on-coming traffic. Exiting a vehicle near fast-flowing lanes of travel could turn out to be a mistake you will not make twice.
  • Move off the road, as far as possible, leaving clearance between your vehicle and on-coming traffic, in crucial. You don’t want to open a door into passing traffic or step in front of a speeding car!

Oftentimes fault cannot be found with the vehicles forced to the side of the road. It is the duty of all drivers to be on the look out for changes in terrain or roadway situations.  In the case of vehicles in distress, leaving space around them is the best thing you can do!  In cases where a multi-car collision has occurred and there is a vehicle already on the shoulder of the road, it will be up to investigators to determine if the stopped vehicle was fully removed from the road or impeding on-coming traffic. Either drivers, the stalled or passing, may be considered at fault, if determined either were outside of their designated lane or allowed easement area.

REMEMBER–when there is law enforcement, first responders, fire trucks, or tow trucks flashing lights from the side of the road, it’s the LAW to move over into another lane. That empty lane creates a safety space for them to safely do their jobs.

Our Car Accident & Personal Injury Lawyers Are Here to Help

Unfortunately, some accidents are impossible to avoid. Consulting with a personal injury attorney is one of the best ways to determine your legal rights after an accident. Our experienced legal team at Fielding Law Group can help determine and get the compensation you are entitled to for injuries caused by an at-fault driver. Remember–Don’t let an accident wreck YOU!