3 hospitalized following wrong-way collision

Three people were injured in a multi-vehicle collision on a Washington highway on the night of March 1. According to the Washington State Patrol, early investigation indicated that the crash occurred because a suspected drunk driver was traveling in the wrong direction on Highway 18 and sideswiped one vehicle before colliding head-on with another.

The wrong-way driver, a 37-year-old Puyallup woman, was the only occupant of a 2012 Honda Civic. According to authorities, the Civic was westbound on the eastbound side of Highway 18 approximately one mile west of Kent just prior to 9:30 p.m. A 52-year-old Tacoma woman was eastbound on the highway in a 2002 Dodge Stratus; she swerved but was sideswiped by the Civic, which then continued on and crashed head on with a 1997 Mercedes driven by a 48-year-old Carnation woman.

Police and rescue workers arrived on scene after receiving reports of the crash. The driver of the Civic was transported to Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center. Authorities have indicated that she may face criminal charges, including vehicular assault and driving under the influence, once she is released. The other two drivers were transported to Valley Medical Center. None of the vehicles were carrying any passengers.

The eastbound lanes of Highway 18 were closed for about three hours while the scene was cleared and the cause of the crash was investigated. Those who have suffered auto injuries from a crash may be entitled to recover for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical expenses or other damages. If a driver is charged criminally following a crash, evidence and testimony from criminal proceedings may be relevant to civil claims as well. An attorney might assist an injured party by reviewing the facts of the case and negotiating with defendants and their insurers, or by drafting and filing a complaint in pursuit of money damages.

KOMOnews.com, “Wrong-way driver sparks 3-car crash overnight on Hwy. 18,” March 2, 2015