UPDATED: 6:14 p.m.: Metro also performed a post-accident blood draw on the driver, and “based on our testing, the alcohol portion, there was no alcohol involved,” transit spokeswoman Rochelle Ogershok said. The analysis for drugs could take a couple of weeks, she said.
UPDATED: 1:20 p.m. | A man suffered a head injury when he was hit by a Metro bus in downtown Seattle this morning — but walked for more than a block to a coffee shop.
Seattle police say the bus driver showed signs of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol and was arrested.
The unusual incident occurred at about 7:15 a.m. when the man was hit by a bus — hard enough to crack the bus’s windshield, said Kyle Moore, Seattle Fire Department spokesman. The Route 358 bus, arriving southbound from Aurora Avenue, struck the man just past the corner of Third Avenue and Stewart Street, as the man was walking west across the street, Metro said.
The man, who appeared to be about 6 foot 3, walked into the Starbucks at Westlake Center and ordered a drip coffee, said Tony Farrell, the coffee shop’s morning supervisor. Paramedics described the 32-year-old man as well-dressed, “a downtown business professional,” said Moore.
The man seemed relatively lucid, Farrell said. He wasn’t served the coffee, however, because he was bleeding from his head.
Although an employee had called 911, police and firefighters apparently had been following the man and arrived at the coffee shop soon after he did. The man was stabilized and taken by ambulance to Harborview Medical Center. He had a concussion that was serious but not life-threatening, said Moore.
While all this was going on, customers were ushered out of the store. For about 20 minutes no coffee was being served inside, but walk-up service continued outside, Farrell noted.
A police officer trained to evaluate whether drivers are impaired by drugs or alcohol evaluated the bus driver and determined he was showing signs of impairment, according to Seattle police. Blood was drawn from the driver and then he was released to Metro officials. The results of the blood draw have yet to be released.
The incident tied up traffic downtown for several hours as southbound buses on Third Avenue were diverted to Second Avenue around the crash-investigation site.
Seattle Times staff reporter Mike Lindblom contributed to this report.