PORT ANGELES — A Forks man injured in a two-vehicle collision on the Elwha River bridge on U.S. Highway 101 on Friday night was listed in critical condition Saturday at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
Emmett D. Treichel, 77, of Forks had suffered an unspecified medical emergency and was hurt in the head-on collision at about 8:30 p.m.
He was undergoing treatment in the Harborview intensive care unit, Susan Gregg-Hanson, hospital spokeswoman, said Saturday.
Also injured were Ronald K. Sund, 58, and Bernita K. Sund, 56, both of Edmonds.
Ronald Sund was listed in satisfactory condition at Harborview on Saturday, Gregg-Hanson said.
Bernita Sund was treated at Olympic Medical Center in Port Angeles and discharged, according to the nursing supervisor on duty.
Highway 101 was first fully blocked and then opened to alternating traffic beginning at 9 p.m. and ending at 12:25 a.m., according to the state Department of Transportation.
Treichel was driving a 1999 Chevrolet Suburban at 8:30 p.m. westbound on U.S. Highway 101 near Milepost 239.5 when he suffered an unspecified medical emergency, the State Patrol said.
The Suburban crossed the center line of the bridge over the Elwha River and struck the Ford F-150 pickup truck driven eastbound by Ronald Sund.
Rescue vehicles from Clallam County Fire District No. 2 used the open westbound lane as a work area to extricate the three patients, effectively blocking both lanes of Highway 101 for some time.
Treichel and the two Sunds were removed from their vehicles by firefighters using hydraulic rescue tools, said Chief Sam Phillips of Fire District No. 2 via email Saturday.
The Sunds and their dog were extricated within 20 minutes of arrival by firefighters, Phillips said.
“Our volunteers cared for [the] frightened canine from the Ford F-150 pickup truck,” Phillips said.
“The dog was calmed and sent along with the owners in the ambulance to OMC.”
Treichel’s extrication was more complex, Phillips said, because the Suburban’s cab was crushed during the collision, requiring extensive cutting and removal of doors and firewall components of the SUV.
After arriving at OMC, Treichel and Ronald Sund were stabilized and transferred to Harborview.
Rescue efforts were supported by three Clallam County sheriff’s deputies as well as three State Patrol troopers from the Port Angeles detachment, Phillips said.
Olympic National Park rangers conducted traffic control until state Department of Transportation personnel arrived with sign trucks and rerouted traffic.
All three travelers were wearing seat belts. The State Patrol said it was unknown if drugs or alcohol was involved.
The fire department brought three ambulances, one rescue engine, two command vehicles and 12 firefighters.
Features Editor Chris McDaniel can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56650, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.