Another Crazy Car Crash on 18th and Harvard St, NW

It’s been a rough couple of weeks trying to navigate 18th and Harvard St, NW. Thanks to a reader for sending the photo. They write:

“First the great tractor trailer crash last week, now this! My intersection sure is busy this week.”

Another reader writes:

“Also, looks to be a couple (of sorts, a guy and girl). The girl has just been cuffed.”

At Intersection of 18th and Quarry Rd, NW by Harvard:

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41 Comment

  • Looks like this moron just saw the street straight ahead and didn’t realize there was a flight of stairs there…

  • This happens here with some regularity.

  • Recalculating!

  • When I see things like this, I get reminded how easy it would be for any one of us to be wiped out at any moment. Jesus.

  • Is this a really tricky intersection to navigate by car? How does this happen? Well, obviously the truck incident was an issue of being too big for the britches but this one?

    • I can navigate this intersection in my giant Cargo van – so I don’t understand how people in normal sized cars have problems with it.

      • Yes, but presumably you’ve driven through the intersection on a regular basis. I can absolutely understand someone continuing through the dead end there because you can’t see the stairs and can see the road continue below.

        It’s not necessarily the size of the car or whether it’s difficult to maneuver. It’s unfamiliarity with the area.

        • I dunno – as others have mentioned, there’s a stop sign at the end of Quarry road, and the only way to have gotten to the stairs is to have gone over the sidewalk. Now, I’m a fairly new driver to the city and I’ve done my fair share of stupid things because I didn’t know traffic patterns or streets while I was driving. But if someone misses the stop sign AND goes over the side walk – like, that’s only going to happen if you’re majorly distracted, or intoxicated.

    • The trick to making the turn would be to pay attention. I drive on this road all the time, and I should at this point just stop being surprised by how clueless most drivers seem to be…

  • Glad everyone is okay! Also glad to see my tax dollars hard at work. Can somebody please get these cops a drink?! All they have is a concrete wall to sit on. They must be miserable; looking onward is not easy!

  • These people had to have been special. It’s not readily apparent that the street would continue, especially since there’s a stop sign at that intersection on 18th, and there’s normally a parallel parked car right there.

    • ah

      Kind of incomprehensible that the lack of a curb cut, fences, and railings wouldn’t be enough of a clue. But perhaps a street sign, even just for zoned parking, right in the middle would help make it clear.

  • I love that on street view there’s a mason fixing that brick wall that was apparently taken out by the semi last week. It’s like getting a real time view of Harvard St!!

  • May I humbly suggest that the second photo be next week’s Caption Contest photo? Seems like great potential.

    I’m glad no one is hurt, though.

  • Are the license plates MD or VA?

  • Now opening The Marylander Job: Drive stupid, Do stupid, Arrest stupid.

  • My wife and I actually saw this happen. It was no accident. The driver definitely knew what he was doing and for some reason decided to try to save the thirty seconds that it would take to drive around. There had to have been some form of intoxication because nobody on their right mind would do this deliberately.

  • I thought this was a Brightest Young Things art installation

  • the only thing i can think of from looking at google street view since i’m not familiar with this road, is that maybe the drivers thought it was some sorf of ramp that went down, rather than stairs? otherwise i just have no freaking clue…

  • Looks like the driver only stopped because the car was high-centered. Need much higher clearence to do a staircase like that.

  • ThunderCheese

    Quarry hasn’t been a through street for 100 years.

  • This works on Grand Theft Auto all the time.

  • There is a car-chase scene like this in the movie “What’s Up Doc?”

  • ~ the first Asian DC Streets Grand Prix was halted 3 minutes out of the starting gate due to a mishap ~

    Hey, I’m the second best driver in DC (who’s the best? don’t know – haven’t met HIM yet) so am a Asian exception but I always dread the crash derby parking lot at Eden Center or H-Mart

  • There is a big curb on the sidewalk. She had to be under the influence because she was arrested.

  • Loved the temporary stop sign at the top of the stairs this morning.

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