Fatal crash at Ambaum & SW 154th in Burien Friday evening; DUI suspected


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Friday evening (Nov. 21) just after 5 p.m., there was a terrible, fatal 2-car crash on Ambaum Blvd. SW at SW 154th Street, according to the Burien Police Department.

The crash happened in front of – and into – the “log cabin” on Ambaum near Ronnie’s Market, with one car striking the building. This building has been known to host Alcohol Anonymous and 12-Step meetings.

Word is that the suspected DUI driver survived the crash.

Police closed down the area around the intersection, including Ambaum Blvd. SW, for several hours as they investigated the crash scene.

Jerrod Sessler sent us the following pic, and told us that he witnessed medics work for 20 minutes to cut the victim out with the jaws of life around 5:20 p.m.

That person did not survive.

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Here are Tweets sent out by the King County Sheriff’s Office, BurienPD and others:

As we learn more about this accident, we’ll update this post…

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Comments

25 Responses to “Fatal crash at Ambaum & SW 154th in Burien Friday evening; DUI suspected”
  1. Me says:

    I live right behind Vision Collision and heard the boom. Sad stuff. That intersection is one of the worst I’ve ever seen. Needs a traffic light bad.

    • Joey H says:

      I use that route 2-3 times per day. I don’t think it needs a traffic light, as much as it needs people to use their signals, pedestrians to not walk diagonally from Ronnie’s Market to the corner, and drivers to remember the rules of the road. I cannot tell you how many times I have had people coming up Ambaum slam on their brakes as I come out into the turn lane. Oh yeah, and for people to quit cutting the corner when they turn, running stop signs….I could go on and on about how putting up a light at that intersection is a waste of resources. We would be better off re-educating our drivers.

      • Wiley says:

        Is this the same intersection where a middle school aged girl was struck by a drunk driver while she crossed Ambaum in the crosswalk? The accident was 2-3 years ago on a clear sky summer evening. I wonder how many vehicle accidents have occurred in that intersection. Maybe a stop light is in order.
        Joey H: do you have any workable ideas for re-educating drivers? What would the re-education curriculum consist of? Would re-educating all Burien drivers be less expensive than a stop light? How often would drivers be required to be re-educated? Who would re-educate them? How many re-educators will it take to complete the process? How would you keep track of who’s been re-educated and who still needs the re-education?
        Have you given your idea much thought?

        • Joey H says:

          Short answer is yes, I do think it would be cheaper than putting in a light. Well educated, responsible, alert, and attentive drivers, would cause less accidents all over Burien….and beyond.

          Afterthought, maybe a light would have stopped the drunk driver! (sarcasm intended)

      • Me says:

        You can teach and teach and teach. It comes down to common sense, which most people do not have. Everyone knows the rules of the road. They choose not to follow.

    • Taxpayer says:

      REALLY? This person was DRUNK ….. WENT OFF ROAD….and HIT A BUILDING!!
      No light will fix that. Sad.

  2. Dr Fulton says:

    In my opinion a light is needed. For two reasons. One I have been in practice, thirty years at that location, I have witnessed 2 to 3 accidents a year, during that time.

    And two, some folks driving southbound on Ambaum, come off the light at 153rd, At a very fast rate of speed, and fail to make the Ambaum curve. A light would slow them down.

    I feel it would be money well spent

  3. Cheryl says:

    Ugh terrible accident.RIP to the victim and sympathies to the family…I was in a car accident in Ambaum and SW 146th last June thanks to some idiot who ran red light hitting me sending me spinning and threaded thru poles and ended up on pavement right next to Yires. I too had to be extricated from car.

  4. Cheryl says:

    Traffic lights prob won’t prevent accidents although could decrease it but people do run red lights.

  5. Another Taxpayer says:

    The fact that the driver was drunk will certainly be relevant to the investigation, but why was it announced as a possibility so early in the investigation? There was no certainty, as evidenced by the “Initial information appears…” disclaimer, so why was it mentioned at all?

    There was an accident and someone died. The cause of the accident will be important later, but at the time that tweet was made, it was not. The tweets about the road being closed for investigation of a fatal accident were appropriate. Obvious, unapologetic speculation about the cause of the accident is not.

    Consider the possibility that you were on the way home from shopping when something failed catastrophically in your vehicle. Although you make an attempt, you are unable to recover the vehicle and perish in the resulting collision. Now, consider further that, while shopping, you purchased a quantity of alcohol and were transporting it home. In the accident, the bottles with the alcohol break, flooding the area with the very strong odor of alcohol. A PIO making a statement like this may not have any legal liability for them (heck, they could even retract it later), but it will have a serious negative effect on you and your family. You would be known as a drunk driving killer. Your family will spend eternity defending your memory. All because of an irresponsible, unnecessary, completely speculative statement by a representative of our law enforcement community.

    I’m not a fan of drunk drivers. I believe they should be prosecuted to the fullest extent when their guilt is proven. What I am a fan of is the concept that people are innocent until proven guilty. Speculation is for editorial writers, not king county police public information officers.

  6. seahurst homeowner says:

    im trying to get this clear, did the drunk guy die, or an innocent victim?

  7. seahurst homeowner says:

    nevermind, just reread again. Wow. Condolences to the family, i had a close family member (pedestrian) get hit by a highly intoxicated driver, was killed instantly. Very sad, maybe we should start doing the random DUI tests like they do in Australia. Have cops lurking around the bars nailing people as they get into their cars etc.

    Oh dear.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Yes…it is obvious you did not know the deceased.

  9. seahurst homeowner says:

    Maybe Burien could make a deal with that lawsuit about the dead end crash, and agree to invest the 16 million in public and road safety.

  10. jimmy says:

    I wonder what would happen if the bars hired off duty police officer’s to do breathalyzers on driver’s suspected of having a little to much to drink. If it would cut down on things like this

    • Rico says:

      Yeah that would be cost effective. Most bars don’t make squat because the high insurance they have to pay so hiring off duty cop wouldn’t help. Good thought though.

  11. Joey says:

    I’m sorry for the loss of the victim and his family. 🙁

  12. Rico says:

    Alcohol might have been the cause but what about all the idiots who decide to wait until last minute to merge because they’re too important to wait their turn in the correct lane. It never backs enough to justify the overflow lane before that intersection. With this daily occupancy I’m surprised something bad like this hasn’t happened already.

  13. Commenting has been edited and closed on this story due to inappropriate behavior.