VIDEO: Vehicle Too Fast on Slick I-405 Narrowly Misses WSP Trooper

Video footage from a patrol car shows Washington State Patrol Trooper Michael Porter barely avoiding being struck by a vehicle that rolled several times toward him on the shoulder during a collision investigation.

A new video released today shows Washington State Patrol trooper narrowly missed getting hit by a vehicle that rolled over after losing control while travelling too fast for this weekend's rainy and slick conditions.

Washington State Patrol Trooper Michael Porter had been stopped at the scene of a one-car spin-out collision on southbound Interstate 405 at the interchange to westbound Interstate 90 in Bellevue, around 9:20 a.m. Saturday when he was nearly struck by another sedan that had lost control rolling over toward him and the patrol car.

The footage from Porter's patrol car shows the trooper jumping out of the way while trying not to slip in the wet grass or running into traffic, according to the Washington State Patrol.

The video shows that as the dust clears, the rolled over gray sedan has struck the original car wreck, and sits with smoke coming out of its hood next to the original collision.

"I think I'm going to need some psychological help after that one. Good god," Porter says shortly after he jumped out of the way.

The 58-year-old driver of the rollover car explained to Porter what happened.

"I saw your lights before I saw you, and I just touched my brakes, and in the panic (inaudible) I lost my car," he said. 

Porter's video caught a total of four collisions in 30 minutes (though the 10-minute video provided only showed the one that nearly struck him) according to the Washington State Patrol.

In just over 30 minutes four collisions occurred on that same stretch of roadway. Two of those collisions were recorded by the trooper’s patrol car camera.  While investigating the first two collisions a third vehicle lost control and rotated in clear view of the camera.

The Washington State Patrol noted, "The most notable part of the video is how many vehicles were not having any difficulty driving on the wet roadway." 

This video is a clear depiction of what occurs when drivers travel at speeds that exceed what is safe for the roadway conditions. Like many collisions, there may be more factors in addition to speed too fast for conditions on the wet roadway that resulted in the drivers losing control of their vehicles but it’s clear that many drivers did not have any difficulty adjusting their speed to safely maneuver this ramp.  Following a collision, drivers and passengers are urged to stay safely seat belted inside the vehicle and activate hazard lights while waiting for emergency responders to arrive.

The driver of the grey vehicle that rolled over suffered minor injuries. The two-car collision that was not viewed on the video was a minor injury collision.  The two, one-car spinout collisions were listed as non injury, according to the state patrol.

Kendall Watson October 16, 2012 at 11:19 PM
The video quality isn't the best but gives you a great idea of how chaotic it can get in a car accident. It's hard not to feel compassion for the trooper, who manages to hold it together after the car rolls by him and nearly kills him, calling on his maker a few minutes later. Some real bravery on display there, in my humble opinion. Great job for getting the video and sharing it with us, Venice.
Venice Buhain October 19, 2012 at 03:56 AM
Thanks, Kendall. Because the sound is sketchy, I couldn't hear this when I was putting the video together: The trooper said a little after jumping out of the way, "I think I'm going to need some psychological help after that one. Good god." The audio also captured the driver telling the trooper: "I saw your lights before I saw you, and I just touched my brakes, and in the panic (inaudible) I lost my car." (I've now added those details to the text of the story.)
Helen November 16, 2012 at 05:36 AM
Does anybody else sees what I see at 5:8, 5:10 trough 5:16 what another car is doing? Even with that scene cars still go too fast, just watch carefully starting 5:8 it is amazing how a third car is about to go in the pile, for God's sake people slow down...


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