Seahawks players OK after 'freak' collision

Updated: January 30, 2006, 9:16 PM ET
Associated Press

DETROIT -- NFL MVP Shaun Alexander and several other Seattle Seahawks got a jolt Monday when their van was struck by an automated parking gate. The players were jostled from their seats, but said no one was injured.

Alexander, fellow Pro Bowlers Matt Hasselbeck, Steve Hutchinson and Walter Jones and Michael Boulware were on their way to a downtown news conference when the accident occurred.

Alexander said the players were in the second of two vans transporting the Seahawks. He said the first van was full of team public relations personnel and cleared through the gate crossing without incident -- "of course," he joked.

But the van carrying Alexander and the all-stars was struck from the side and below by automatic gates while trying to get through the entrance at the hotel complex.

"It was a big jerk. That was about it," Jones said. "It was a freak thing. But everyone laughed it off."

Hasselbeck said he had just removed his seat belt when the gate struck. He said the van was left inoperable.

"I think it's the first accident I've ever been involved in in my life," he said.

Alexander said there was a loud bang that startled the players and especially shook the driver.

"It was crazy," Alexander said. "We all got tossed around a bit inside. But we're all OK."

Alexander said he saw Pittsburgh running back and Detroit native Jerome Bettis coming out of the hotel.

"I said to him, 'Do you have one of those automatic things to push the gates down?' He said, 'No, it wasn't me,' " Alexander said.

NFL vice president of security Milt Ahlerich said the accident would be reviewed.

"The most important thing is that no one was injured," he said.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press