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Ride The Ducks Sued By Family Of Youngest Victim Of Crash

Provided by Corrie Yackulic
Runjie Song was the youngest of the five people killed in crash between a Ride the Ducks vehicle and a charter bus.

Anotherlawsuit has been filed against the Ride the Ducks company, the city of Seattle and Washington state, over last year’s deadly crashon the Aurora bridge. This latest suit was filed by relatives of the youngest victim, Runjie Song, a 17-year-old from China who died in the tragedy.

Runjie Song had only been in Seattle a few days when the North Seattle College student boarded a tour bus last September. She was one of five people who died when a Ride the Ducks amphibious vehicle crossed the center line on the Aurora Bridge and broad sided the bus. Dozens more were injured in the crash.

Attorney Corrie Yackulic, who is filing the complaint along with the Phillips Law Group, says Song had won a scholarship in China to study in the United States. She says Song’s father had died in a tragic accident when the girl was three and her widowed mother didn’t make a lot of money.

“So, she was the family’s hope for greater financial security, so one of our goals is to help her family going forward,” said Yackulic.

The other goal, says Yackulic, is to hold the Ride the Ducks company, and the state and city, accountable. The suit contends vehicle maintenance was not adequate, that the state of Washington didn’t properly address a dangerous roadway and that the city of Seattle was negligent because it allowed the wide amphibious vehicles to use the bridge, which has narrow lanes.

The company, city and state declined comment on the suit.

The lawsuit is scheduled to go to trial next spring, but Yackolic says it’s possible it will be consolidated with other cases before then.

Paula is a former host, reporter and producer who retired from KNKX in 2021. She joined the station in 1989 as All Things Considered host and covered the Law and Justice beat for 15 years. Paula grew up in Idaho and, prior to KNKX, worked in public radio and television in Boise, San Francisco and upstate New York.