Witness haunted by fatal crash near Stevens Pass
December 26, 2012
By Erik Stevik
Amy Davis dutifully checked the road conditions before getting into her pickup truck for the long drive east across Stevens Pass last Friday.
“I thought we were free and clear,” the Marysville woman said.
The roads, it turned out, were fine.
It was the tall trees lining the mountainous stretch of highway that posed the silent danger. Their branches grew heavy. The snow froze, turning limbs into icy anvils.
As thousands of drivers crossed the pass to and from Snohomish County, the trees grew weaker, unable to bear the weight.
The pines and alders snapped; the Douglas firs uprooted.
More than 38 trees toppled over U.S. 2 east of Stevens Pass toward Leavenworth. That triggered a four-day closure of the major east-west highway. Each tree that fell was more than a foot in diameter.