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Hot-rod driver critically injured in Everett, WA crash.

By Jackson Holtz, Herald Writer

EVERETT -- Witnesses told police it looked like a man in a hot rod burned rubber and was showing off his fancy car moments before he crashed head-on into a minivan in Everett Friday.

The seriously injured man was rushed to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

The man, who fire officials said was in his 50s, was listed in critical condition Friday afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Around 11:15 a.m. Friday, the high-performance 1923 Ford T-Bucket street rod crashed in the intersection of Rucker Avenue and 42nd Street, Everett police Sgt. Robert Goetz said.

Witnesses said the hot rod driver was going fast as he headed south on Rucker. He apparently swerved into northbound traffic to avoid hitting a car that was turning left onto 42nd, Goetz said.

The man was ejected from the modified car and landed about 15 feet away.


"It looked like he got launched out," said Robert Tegland, 20, of Everett, who was waiting for a bus in the area. "It was really sad to see someone on the ground."

The driver of the minivan, an Everett man, 45, was not hurt, Goetz said.


The street was closed until about 2:30 p.m. as collision detectives investigated. They'll try to determine exactly what happened and who, if anyone, might be at fault.

Firefighters said it didn't appear that the souped-up car was equipped with a seat belt. Vintage cars aren't required to have safety restraints, Goetz said.

Still, many owners of classic cars will install seat belts and other safety devices, said John Dahlbeck, vice president, Twin City Idlers, a classic car club in Stanwood.

Dahlbeck said the 1923 T-Bucket is a classic street hot rod modeled after the Ford Model T. Typically, it's a two-seater with fat tires in the rear and skinny tires in front. An engine with lots of polished chrome parts usually is exposed in the front.

The hot rod that crashed Friday had a for sale sign on it asking $15,000 or best offer. After the accident, the car was shattered to pieces.

"He was probably just out for a cruise, because it's a nice day," Dahlbeck said. "My heart goes out to the guy. I hope like heck he gets better."

Reporter Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3437 or

Man, I hate to see this type of thing happen. One, it's a waste of talent and equipment. Two, it's the type of thing the "Do Gooders" get ahold of an try to make our hobby extinct. We really don't need this kind of press.

I noticed in the slide show that frame broke at the weld point on the kickup. Might be a home build frame with poor penitration. The weld should not let go like that without bending the frame. Of course it is a moot point now. But, some of us should learn from this. If you are not careful with a MIG machine and don't maintain a good puddle, the weld can ride up and and over. Weld will look good, but is not even close to good penitration. I take a class every few years to just keep me from getting bad habits, stick out, tip angle, puddle control, Etc.

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