Snowplow causes damage; court official killed | will it snow in florida

The News-Messenger and News Herald are counting down the Top 10 stories of 2022, based on our readers’ interest and staff input. Today we look at the No 6 and No. 5 top stories of the year.

No. 6: Snowplow damages 56 vehicles, causes 18 injuries

It was a cold winter afternoon Sunday, Jan. 23, 2022, when a light snow swept across Sandusky and Ottawa counties. It was far from a major winter storm but there was enough snow on the ground to get snow plows busy clearing roads.

Unfortunately for drivers heading eastbound on the Ohio Turnpike, one of the turnpike’s snowplow drivers was clearing lanes for westbound traffic and sent a wintry mix of snow, ice and slush flying over the concrete divider wall into oncoming traffic, damaging about 56 vehicles, causing several crashes and injuring 18 people. None of the injuries was considered life-threatening, according to the Ohio Highway Patrol.

The Ohio Turnpike Commission inspects snowplows before the start of winter every year.

The flying snow and ice blasted the oncoming vehicles “over a couple of miles,” starting near milepost 117 near the Ohio 250 interchange, according to Ferzan Ahmed, executive director of the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission.

The snowplow operator, Timothy Rakay, 54, of Berea, was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation and subsequently was fired.

“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,” Ahmed said after the incident.

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