Police: Accident ‘Looked Bad,’ Luckily No Injuries

According to Snoqualmie Police Captain Nick Almquist, a rainy morning accident scene on Snoqualmie Parkway looked bad, but luckily there were no injuries.

A witness who traveled past the scene said police had one downhill lane of Snoqualmie Parkway closed around 7:30AM, January 13, 2016, as it responded to an apparent two-car collision near the intersection of Fisher Ave.

The collision landed one sedan in the grassy Parkway median about a half block from Fisher Ave with its driver’s side damaged. Another small sedan landed in the grassy shoulder, facing the opposite direction of traffic, on the southeasterly side of Fisher Ave intersection with front end damage.

The witness said what appeared to be a bumper was in the roadway “pretty far past” the scene. Captain Almquist did not state the cause of the accident, presumably because it is still under investigation.

The speed limit on Snoqualmie Parkway is 40mph, but from personal experience, in downhill sections drivers tend to surpass that posted speed limit – sometimes by up to 10mph.

The Fisher intersection is the entrance to two large neighborhoods – Ironwood and Woody Creek. Last fall some area residents requested the City of Snoqualmie install a new traffic signal at the intersection, but a city study showed the intersection doesn’t meet specific minimum thresholds for a signal, including traffic accidents.

According to city records, in the past eight years there have only been three accidents at the intersection (not including today’s collision), including a vehicle vs. light pole; a car vs. pedestrian that resulted in minor injuries; and a bicyclist crash that did not involve a vehicle, putting collision rate below the state and King County averages.

The City of Snoqualmie is in the planning stages for installation of a pedestrian Hawk Signal for the Snoqualmie Parkway/Fisher Ave intersection, though.

 

accident pic

Scene of a two-car collision on Snoqualmie Parkway near Fisher Ave on Wednesday, 1/13/16.

 

Comments

  1. Another accident at this intersection…… When will the city get smart and put in a light? And now there is a new popular park at the intersection????? Do we have to wait till a child gets injured or worse for the city and mayor to wake up?

  2. With the new Seahawks park and kids crossing the street to catch the buses this is an accident waiting to happen. Plus it’s a major blind spot when driving uphill during the hour prior to sunset. It’ll take a death or two before Mayor Larson gets the point.

  3. It was raining and still dark at 7:30 am when this accident occurred. The second car in this accident was completely totaled, spun out of control and nearly missed the county bus stop and nearby school bus stop. This car narrowly missing a child walking on the sidewalk to board the school bus. The loaded school bus had just crossed the intersection seconds before this accident occurred. Poor visibility, high rose bushes in the center divide, and the lack of proper lighting on the parkway played a role in this accident as well. The other car spun out and landed in the grassy center divide exactly were our city wants to install a hawk crosswalk.
    Here are facts obtained from the city through public records: Our city signed a contract with Quadrant and accepted $204,710.00 agreeing to install a traffic signal at Fisher Ave 10 years ago. A couple of months after the money was accepted, Mayor Matt Larson took over as our new Mayor and nothing has been done under his leadership. Quadrant already installed the infrastructure underground to make way for a traffic signal when they developed the area. A low bid of $368,616 to finish installing a traffic signal came into the city in May of 2008 yet city leadership urged the city council to not approve the installation of the signal because they were about $150,000.00 short. Since then there have been approximately 6 serious accidents at Fisher Ave. involving vehicle collisions and a bicyclist that was hit by a car and is still recovering from injuries. This is the second accident since 2008 that has involved a school bus loaded with children narrowly being missed which I have warned our school district about.
    Our Mayor and City Council have received about 50 written pleas from residents in just the past 3 to 4 months and many prior phone calls and emails. Dozens of residents have recently pleaded at city council meetings, public works committee meeting and community safety meeting in past months. Residents have also signed a written petition with over 200 signatures begging for a traffic light at this intersection expressing our concern for our safety especially children.

    Letters obtained through the public records process uncovered current City Administrator Bob Larson and Kirk Holmes, past Public Works Director, expressing the need for a traffic signal at Fisher Ave. ten years ago. I have attended the city council meetings regularly since October about this issue. Our City Administrator Bob Larson now sits quietly through each meeting with no opinion about his past demand for Quadrant to provide funds for a traffic signal. Residents question what the city has done with the $204,710.00, plus an additional $7,000.00 in accrued confirmed by the finance department. After multiple requests for proof the money exists, the city has refused to provide a bank statement as requested. Mayor Larson, City Administrators and City Council members refuse to follow through on their contractual obligation with Quadrant to install a traffic signal. They claim there is not enough money to install it.
    They are planning to install a single Hawk crosswalk across the parkway with no traffic signal, only if they are awarded bid money due to lack of funds. They have applied for grant money for a Hawk Crosswalk in the past years several times and have been denied every time. So their solution is to do nothing. In a recent article in the Record they speak of a hawk crosswalk like it is a sure thing without mentioning failed bid attempts in the past. They have been kicking this can down the road for over ten years and the recent park expansion and population growth we have experienced is a recipe for disaster.
    How could they expand the Fisher Creek park without first providing safe access to and from the park? A Hawk Crosswalk with no traffic signal will be more dangerous giving pedestrians a false sense of security and will not avoid traffic accidents or control speeding trucks and cars traveling up to 55 mph down the parkway. We have warned the city and the school district as we have witnessed school children crossing the parkway by foot early in the dark early morning hours to catch a school bus and young families with baby strollers crossing on foot to go to the newly expanded Fisher Creek park. City officials are well aware of this problem.
    Yet, our Mayor is more interested in other projects like the Tokul Road project near the Salish and the River Walk. The city has already spent millions of dollars in past years purchasing homes along the river using eminent domain laws to force property owners to sell to the city along the river to make way for the future river walk. It was reported at the last city council meeting they have about 12 more homes to buy. This is not to be confused with the school district also using eminent domain to purchase homes on the east side of the high school for expansion. The city has also absorbed 2.3 million dollars in costs to build the 7 million dollar Tokul Road round about while the property owner and future developer (Muckleshoot) have only paid 1.7 million, and 3 million should be earned in grants. Why should tax payers pay for a round about which will benefit the future developments financially near the Salish Lodge. They are planning to soon level about 60 acres of forest near the Snoqualmie Falls to begin construction. Clearly these developers are much better negotiators then our Mayor and city officials. The Muckleshoot tribe who owns the land will soon build a new 250 room hotel, a large convention center and 175 new executive homes. Developers should pay for this round about not the residents and tax paying citizens of Snoqualmie. Next they will need an additional road, I wonder who will pay for that?
    I have asked our Mayor to require the developers to pay traffic mitigation fees which could help pay for way intersection on the parkway without a traffic signal. I suppose our city believes future tax revenue and helping developers with our tax dollars is more important than the lives of citizens that pay taxes and have lived in Snoqualmie for years. Mayor Matt Larson and Public Works Director Dan Marcinko’s handling of this safety hazard is totally unacceptable.
    I hope our City Council members, who voted to close the discussion for a traffic signal last November, per Mayor Larson’s request, will change course. I requested this week that they reopen this for discussion and protect the citizens that have elected them to public office before someone is killed. Our city purchased a $55,000 ice skating rink last Fall, even though it lost money the year before, and recently designated approximately $150,000 toward a skate board park. Surely they can find the remaining money needed to install a standard traffic signal with three signalized crosswalks at Fisher to prevent future injuries. Safety should be a priority.the needed funds at Fisher Ave. for a traffic signal. He told me they are not requiring the developers to pay traffic mitigation fees and it is too late to do so and contracts have been signed. I asked the city council and city officials to require the developers of the new shopping center to be constructed this year between Chase and the police station to pay traffic mitigation fees before contracts were signed and the city chose not to do so. Two major missed opportunities for residents of Snoqualmie. Both of these future projects will add a large increase of traffic on the Snoqualmie Parkway. All residents traveling near the Fisher Ave intersection and visiting the newly expanded community park need to be aware of the hazards and if possible reply to this blog to express their concern. I also hope our local news sources will do more investigative work on the cities financial status in regards to the Tokul road projects and report it back to the people.

  4. Dana,

    I am having difficulty finding your recent article regarding the Fisher Ave and Snoqualmie Parkway intersection in regards to the HAWK crosswalk and a petition signed by residents. Has this been pulled down for some reason? Please let me know. Thank you for all you do.

    Sincerely,

    Monica Lowney

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