According to the Washington State Patrol, a woman recently was killed following a collision between a semi truck and a passenger car near Arlington, on Interstate 5. The collision happened in the highway’s southbound lanes, just north of Highway 531, shortly after 3:30 in the morning. Reports confirm that traffic was immediately shut down in the area as a result of the wreck, and did not resume normal activity until four hours later.

The passenger vehicle was a 2001 Honda Accord, driven by an 87-year-old resident of Camano Island. Immediately before the trucking accident, the Honda was in the rightmost lane, moving slower than normal traffic. The driver of the semi came up on the smaller car and tried to turn aside, but was unable to avoid hitting the smaller vehicle. The Honda was thrown across all traffic lanes, coming to a stop in the median. The 75-year-old woman passenger in the car was apparently killed on impact.

The car’s driver was taken to a nearby hospital by medical helicopter. He is still at the hospital and is listed as in critical condition.

According to police, there is still no word on why the car was moving so slowly. Alcohol has been ruled out as a possibility for both the driver of the semi and the driver of the Accord.

While it is fairly clear that the driver of the semi is at least not entirely at fault in this case, the collision illustrates something that has come up as a concern time and time again in such matters. Specifically, semi trucks are huge. They are very difficult to control, and if attention wavers or an unexpected situation comes up, their ability to respond is incredibly limited. The semi driver had time to see the problem and react, but still was unable to get the vehicle under control without causing the collision.