Car swerves off highway in Ohio as a speeding snow plow causes a car wreck [video]


This is the terrifying moment a car careered off the highway as a snow plow sprayed a torrent of icy chunks into oncoming traffic, causing multiple crashes.

Ohio State Highway Patrol said at least 40 cars were damaged by the flying debris or in accidents caused by it, with 12 people injured, in the incident on the Ohio Turnpike in Erie County on January 23. 

Footage captured on truck driver Michael Lemon’s dashcam shows the plow appearing to travel as fast as the rest of the traffic, at around 70mph, causing it to send hardened snow and slush onto vehicles traveling in the opposite direction. 

Ohio State Highway Patrol at least 40 cars were damaged by flying debris or resulting accidents with 12 people injured, none life-threatening, on the Ohio Turnpike in Erie County on January 23. Pictured, a car swerves off the road after being hit by the jet of ice and snow

Footage captured on truck driver Michael Lemon's dashcam shows the plow appearing to travel as fast as the rest of the traffic, at around 70mph, causing it to send hardened snow and slush debris onto traveling in the opposite direction

Footage captured on truck driver Michael Lemon’s dashcam shows the plow appearing to travel as fast as the rest of the traffic, at around 70mph, causing it to send hardened snow and slush debris onto traveling in the opposite direction

Lemon’s footage shows the snow plow looming into view on the opposite side of the slushy highway. 

A jet of snow, ice and slush engulfs vehicles travelling in front of him and one swerves across the lanes and off the road.

Lemon said: ‘I’ve never seen anything like that. I didn’t know how to react, I was just dumbfounded that somebody could be so reckless.’

He told 3WTKR other drivers did not know how to react either, saying: ‘A lot of them didn’t even know what to do, they just they kind of tried to stay in their own lane and hope to weather it.’ 

The snow plow debris caused serious damage to numerous cars. Lemon said the one in his video was left with a gaping hole in its front windshield.  

He said he pulled over and talked to victims of the crash, some who had arm and shoulder injuries. None of the injuries were life-threatening, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol. 

The snow plow debris caused serious damage to numerous cars. Lemon said the one in his video was left with a gaping hole in its front windshield

The snow plow debris caused serious damage to numerous cars. Lemon said the one in his video was left with a gaping hole in its front windshield

Mr Lemon’s truck was also hit and he said one of his headlights was blown out of the hood. 

The plow truck driver has been identified as Timothy S Rakay, 54, from Berea. He has been placed on administrative leave, is not injured and is cooperating with investigators. 

The Ohio State Highway Patrol were contacted at about 1.46pm Sunday.

They found the snow plow was traveling west while throwing large quantities of snow and ice across the highway onto the eastbound cars.

The snow plow debris caused serious damage to numerous cars. Lemon said the one in his video was left with a gaping hole in its front windshield

The snow plow debris caused serious damage to numerous cars. Lemon said the one in his video was left with a gaping hole in its front windshield

A spokesperson for the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission said the vehicle appeared to have done so for ‘a couple of miles’. 

The spokesperson said: ‘During our snow and ice operations, a plow truck driver was travelling westbound plowing snow in the left lane and in the left shoulder with the wing plow deployed.

‘Beginning near the 117 milepost, which is close to the State Route 250 interchange, the plow truck operator was throwing snow, ice and slush over the median divider wall onto oncoming traffic. 

‘This appears to have occurred over a couple miles, resulting in damage to approximately 40 cars and trucks, caused accidents, and unfortunately injuries.

‘As with any incident that results in accident or injury, the employee was immediately removed from shift and sent for mandatory drug and alcohol testing. 

‘The employee is currently on administrative leave pending the outcome of these investigations when appropriate action will be taken.

‘The Ohio State Patrol, Ohio Turnpike Maintenance, and disabled vehicle service companies, Interstate Towing and Madison Motor Service, assisted in removing the vehicles from the turnpike. 

‘We took the customers to the patrol post in Milan, Ohio, as well as a local restaurant and hotel. 

‘We are coordinating our efforts with the Ohio State Highway Patrol and are currently contacting each customer directly who was affected by yesterday’s snowplow incident.’

The incident is being investigated by the Ohio State Highway Patrol and potential charges are pending the review of the Erie County Prosecutor’s findings.   



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