APD identifies woman killed in Glenn Highway crash

Thursday, November 1, 2018 - 16:33

Police have identified the woman killed Tuesday in a vehicle vs. pedestrian crash on the Glenn Highway.

On Thursday, Anchorage Police Department spokeswoman Renee Oistad identified the victim as 42-year-old Sarah Rodden of Wasilla. According to APD, Rodden died after she exited her vehicle following a collision on the Glenn near South Birchwood Loop at around 4 p.m. and was subsequently hit by another vehicle sliding into the center median.

Oistad said Rodden did the right thing by getting out of her vehicle, and offered this advice for anyone involved in a collision:

“After being involved in a crash, the driver should move their vehicle out of the roadway if it’s possible. If the driver cannot get their vehicle out of the roadway, they need to physically get out of their vehicle so they may get to a safe location,” Oistad wrote. “A stalled vehicle on the road is vulnerable to being hit again by oncoming traffic which is why all occupants need to exit.”

Though the outcome in this case was tragic, Oistad said Rodden’s instinct to seek a safer location was appropriate.

“In that situation, it was still correct to exit the vehicles and attempt to get to a safer location,” Oistad wrote. “Prior to the crash there were other crashes and vehicles in the ditch in that area. Due to the icy conditions, the center median that day was not necessarily a safer place to be than the roadway as so many vehicles were sliding into the median/ditches.”

The death occurred during a series of collisions on the highway near Chugiak High School that began at around 3:41 p.m. on the day after the first big snowfall of the season. According to police, a 2001 Dodge van driven by Rodden and 2008 Toyota Rav-4 collided while both vehicles were trying to avoid other crashes. Police said the two drivers got out and were walking toward the roadway when a 2015 Mazda also tried to avoid the collisions and swerved into the median, striking Rodden before striking another vehicle and forcing yet another off the road and into the pile-up.

APD said several bystanders performed CPR on Rodden, but medics who arrived shortly after the collision declared her dead.

The crash caused the Glenn Highway to be shut down for several hours Tuesday afternoon and evening, with traffic routed around the scene via the South Birchwood on- and off-ramps.

On Thursday, Oistad said no charges had been filed in the case.

Email Star editor Matt Tunseth at [email protected]

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