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Accidents seem to happen more frequently over the summer. Last weekend was no exception.

A seven-vehicle crash on Interstate 5 just south of the King-Pierce county line Saturday morning left a 14-year-old boy seriously injured and closed all southbound lanes of the freeway for more than five hours.

At its worst, traffic on southbound I-5 was backed up seven miles, nearly to Kent, said Lauren Penning, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Transportation. Highway 18, to which traffic was diverted, was gridlocked in both directions between I-5 and Highway 167, and northbound I-5 was backed up for three miles, she added.

The accident occurred about 10:30 a.m. when a northbound car swerved to avoid a car stopped in traffic, State Patrol spokeswoman Brandy Kessler said. It rolled and jumped the median into southbound traffic, creating a chain-reaction crash that eventually involved seven vehicles.

Reports from the Seattle Times and other sources indicate the 14-year-old boy sustained life-threatening head injuries and was taken to Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma. They also indicate that he was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. Under Washington law failure to wear a seatbelt cannot be introduced into evidence and does not diminish the injured person’s right to recover money damages.

For more informtion on this subject matter, please refer to the section on Car and Motorcycle Accidents.

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