Tuesday, May 17, 2022
May 17, 2022

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UPDATE: ‘Fight Club’ author involved in Highway 14 crash

Chuck Palahniuk reports sore neck, but not hospitalized


Best-selling author Chuck Palahniuk escaped serious injury Friday morning when he, stopped in a driveway waiting to turn onto state Highway 14, was hit by an out-of-control tractor- trailer rig.

It happened about seven miles east of Washougal around 10:30 a.m., the Washington State Patrol reported.

According to a WSP bulletin, a Freightliner rig carrying a load of scrap metal was traveling west when the driver lost control rounding a left-hand curve. The truck’s trailer rolled onto its side and slid into Palahniuk’s 2009 Toyota Prius.

Palahniuk, who was wearing his seat belt, reported a sore neck, but was not taken to a hospital. His car was totaled, the report said.

The 50-year-old author has a home in the Washougal area. A lifelong Pacific Northwest resident, he is the best-selling author of a dozen fiction books, including “Fight Club,” “Choke” and “Lullaby.” “Fight Club” was made into a movie starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton.

The State Patrol cited truck driver William Farewell, 71, of Eugene, Ore., for allegedly driving too fast for road and weather conditions. His truck and the scattered scrap blocked westbound Highway 14 for several hours. The wreck happened at Milepost 22, near the Clark/Skamania county line.

Although Farewell’s truck ended up on its side, he walked away uninjured, the State Patrol said.

Righting the truck and removing debris took hours.

The State Patrol’s first report had errors that were corrected Friday afternoon.

There’s nothing wrong with the highway east of Cape Horn, said Trooper Ryan Tanner, a veteran trooper and area spokesman who has worked eight years in Clark County and spent most of his life here.

Many truck and car collisions, like the one on Friday, are caused by drivers who take the curves too fast, Tanner said.

The solution: Slow down for corners, especially on wet, slick roads.

Friday’s weather was splendid — sunny and dry with mostly blue skies.

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