As first reported by KIRO News 7, tragedy struck early Wednesday morning on northbound Interstate 5 near 54th Avenue East when a motorcyclist was fatally struck by the driver of a BMW, who callously fled the scene. The incident occurred around 3:20 a.m., sending shockwaves through the community.
According to Washington State Patrol Trooper John Dattilo, the driver of a white BMW was reportedly traveling at a high rate of speed when the collision occurred. The impact was forceful enough to send the BMW tumbling onto its roof, approximately one mile away from the initial point of impact with the motorcycle.
Regrettably, the motorcyclist, identified as a 48-year-old Tacoma woman, succumbed to her injuries, leaving behind a void that will be deeply felt by her loved ones and the local community.
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In a shocking display of disregard for the consequences of his actions, the driver of the BMW chose to flee the scene on foot. Law enforcement officials have identified the suspect as a 20-year-old man from the Auburn area, last seen wearing a white T-shirt and black pants. Determined to bring the perpetrator to justice, authorities have initiated a thorough search operation, enlisting the assistance of a police dog in their efforts.
In the wake of this incident, traffic on the interstate was heavily impacted. Both the HOV and left lanes were blocked in both directions, causing significant disruption for commuters. However, as the investigation progressed, all northbound lanes were eventually reopened around 8:20 a.m., allowing traffic to resume its flow. It is worth noting, though, that the southbound HOV lane remains blocked as the investigation continues.
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This tragic event serves as a stark reminder of the importance of responsible driving and the devastating consequences that can arise from reckless behavior on the roads. The loss of a life and the subsequent search for justice leave a lasting impact on the community, emphasizing the need for heightened awareness and adherence to traffic regulations.
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As the investigation unfolds and authorities intensify their search for the hit-and-run driver, the hope remains that justice will be served and closure will be found for the grieving family and friends of the deceased motorcyclist. In the meantime, the community mourns the loss of a valued member and reflects on the importance of fostering a culture of safety and accountability on our roads.