At 5:15PM, December 13th, WSDOT and police were warning drivers to avoid SR 18 as a multiple vehicle fatality collision was blocking both eastbound and westbound SR 18 between I-90 and the Tiger Mountain summit.
According to KOMO News, WSP troopers said the driveshaft/driveline of a car came off and hit a car traveling eastbound on SR 18, forcing that car to skid into the westbound lanes and collide with an SUV.
The driver of the vehicle heading westbound died and the driver of the SUV was taken to the hospital in critical condition. As troopers could not locate a broken down vehicle in the vicinity, they were also investigating where the driveline may have come from, including the possibility of an unsecured load.
Washington State Patrol Troopers closed SR 18 in the area as emergency crews responded to the accident, including closing the entrance to SR 18 from I-90. According to WSDOT, the accident was blocking all lanes just west of SE 104th near milepost 26.
By 5:40PM drivers on westbound SR 18 stuck in the backup were being turned around to exit the area. WSDOT did not yet have an estimate as to when eastbound SR 18 drivers would also be turned around..
I-90 was experiencing backups approaching the SR 18 interchange due to the accident and ensuing road closure.
The roadway was reopened around 9:20PM, following a lengthy accident investigation.