A dozen people were injured when a snowplow shot debris at high speeds into oncoming traffic on the Ohio Turnpike this past weekend. Witnesses and survivors say the snowplow was driving on the other side of the freeway, where it was ejecting snow over the median that struck vehicles as far as four lanes away. At least 40 vehicles were damaged, according to state troopers.
The snowplow, which was caught on video, caused the accident around 1:46 p.m. while heading westbound through Erie County. "I've never seen anything like that," a survivor said. "I didn't know how to react, I was just dumbfounded that somebody could be so reckless." Motorists suffered a range of injuries, while cars were left with crushed windshields, shattered windows, and broken axles. At least one car was left immobile at the scene.
Who Is Responsible?
The video showed that the snowplow was traveling roughly the same speed as other cars, i.e. around 70 mph—far beyond a safe speed for snow clearance. It was an act of sheer and astounding negligence.
But now motorists are wondering who will pay for their medical and car repair costs. The answer lies with the management company responsible for the Ohio Turnpike. Unlike most highways, the Ohio Turnpike is managed by an independent entity, not the Department of Transportation. As a consequence, the company in charge ought to be held responsible for 100% of the damage.
In the meantime, the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission has placed the snowplow driver on "administrative leave" and had him tested for drug and alcohol use.
Injured people need advocates. That's why Arnold & Itkin makes sure our clients get what they need while they focus on getting better—no matter what. Call (888) 493-1629 for a free consultation if you need help after a car accident.