U.S. 101 head-ons preventable, State Patrol says

After a spate of car crashes on North Olympic Peninsula highways in the past week – including a fatal head-on collision on U.S. Highway 101 near Discovery Bay on Monday – State Patrol representatives are asking drivers to pay more attention behind the wheel.

State Patrol spokesman Trooper Brian George said Monday’s head-on did not seem to be related to one a short distance away last week and do not mark an increase in dangerous conditions.

But the two of them probably could have been avoided, he said.

“The troopers remain vigilant and will be proactive and look for collision-causing violations,” George said.

“It is also important to get drivers’ help and drivers’ assistance to focus on driving. . . . These collisions that troopers investigate are preventable.”

The fatal head-on collision at about 3:30 p.m. Monday killed 42-year-old William James Hibbs of Silverdale, a Navy chief petty officer assigned to Naval Base Kitsap.

Navy spokesman Chris Haley said Hibbs had been stationed at the base for two years.

A funeral ceremony will take place on Friday for Hibbs at Naval Base Kitsap, Haley said.

The wreck occurred on U.S. Highway 101 near East Uncas Road in Jefferson County when Hibbs crossed the centerline headed north in a 1979 Chevrolet Citation sedan and struck a southbound 1997 Ford pickup truck driven by 41-year-old Deborah L. Clevenger of Port Angeles, the State Patrol reported.

Emergency responders extracted Hibbs from the car by cleaving the roof off with the pry tool known as the jaws of life.

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