An elderly couple speeding the wrong way down Interstate 5 crashed into at least two other cars and caused one death on Monday. Police are still investigating why the couple was driving on the wrong side of the highway, though age may have been a factor.

Driver Going Wrong Way on I-5 Causes Fatal Crash near Olympia, Washington


Posted on Oct 29, 2008

SeattlePI.com reports that on Monday, October 27 at around 8:15 PM, a wrong-way driver caused a deadly three-car accident on Interstate 5 near downtown Olympia.

According to Washington State Trooper Brandy Kessler, an elderly couple was seen driving northbound in the southbound lanes. The couple, a 70-year-old man and a 69-year-old woman, sideswiped an oncoming car and then hit a Chevy truck head on as they approached Exit 105, just after the Plum Street overpass. They were driving a 2007 Buick, according to The Associated Press and the Seattle Times.

Witnesses to the accident said that the white Buick was traveling at a very high rate of speed.

While the elderly couple was transported by the paramedics to Providence St. Peter Hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries, The male driver of the truck was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The truck allegedly burst into flames after impact. The truck driver has not been identified.

"I ran about halfway, and the truck just went up in flames," said Adam Gallagher, a witness to the crash who was driving southbound at the time of the accident.

The driver and the passengers in the third car were not seriously injured.

Police are investigating why the couple might have been driving the wrong way on the interstate, although age may have been a factor.

"They're not ruling out criminal charges yet," Kessler said, adding that the driver was being tested for intoxicants.

According to KOMONEWS.com, the southbound lanes of I-5 were shut down for several hours on Friday night as officials cleared the accident scene from the road. Traffic was rerouted.

Thurston County Coroner Gary Warnock told The Olympian that he was checking dental records in order to identify the truck driver. The Olympian also identified the driver of the Buick to be Donald Sullivan of Olympia, WA, and his wife Udelia, also of Olympia.

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