Five people were injured, two seriously, and a section of Interstate 75 was shut down for two hours after a series of accidents on the highway Monday, the Findlay post of the State Highway Patrol reported.
The string of accidents began at 11:29 a.m., the patrol said. A 1999 BMW driven by Emily Hayward, 23, of Waterville, was northbound on I-75 just north of the U.S. 224 exit when she drove off the left side of the road, the patrol reported.
She overcorrected and crossed into the right lane and struck the tires of a tractor-trailer driven by Todd Harsh, 39, of Elida. After that impact, Hayward’s car went off the left side of the roadway again, hit a cable barrier, then crossed the road and struck the truck again, the patrol said.
Hayward was taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. She was cited for a marked lanes violation, the patrol said.
Traffic slowing down as a result of that accident resulted in a multiple-vehicle pileup about a minute later, resulting in two more injuries, the patrol said.
According to troopers, a tractor-trailer driven by Barrett W. Hassel, 43, of Plain City, was northbound in the left lane just south of the Ohio 12 exit when he failed to stop for the slowing traffic and hit several vehicles.
The tractor-trailer initially struck a pickup truck driven by Lannie S. Wright Jr., 43, of Georgetown, Kentucky. Wright’s truck was pushed into another pickup driven by Eric E. Bledsoe, 39, of Olive Hill, Kentucky. Bledsoe’s truck was pushed into a tractor-trailer driven by Jeffrey P. Champagne, 56, of Perryville, Kentucky.
Hassel’s truck then struck two other vehicles in the right lane, the patrol reported.
Wright suffered cuts and abrasions to his face and was taken to Blanchard Valley. A passenger in Bledsoe’s truck, Bobby M. Frederick, 53, of Morehead, Kentucky, suffered severe injuries to the leg and also was taken to the hospital.
That accident forced the shutdown of the interstate for about two hours. A temporary detour was set up using Ohio 15.
Hassel was cited for failure to stop in an assured clear distance ahead, the patrol said. A third related accident occurred at 12:50 p.m. a couple miles south of Findlay and resulted in serious injuries to one person.
The patrol said a motorcycle driven by Richard G. Hautau, 72, of Detroit, was northbound when he failed to stop and struck a tractor-trailer driven by Rick A. Groll, 60, of Maumee, who had stopped because of the earlier accidents.
Hautau and his passenger, Sharron W. Hautau, 74, were both injured and taken to Blanchard Valley. According to the patrol, Sharron Hautau suffered severe head injuries.
Richard Hautau was cited for failure to stop in an assured clear distance ahead.
Assisting at the accident scenes were Hanco EMS, Mac and Bob’s Towing, the Ohio Department of Transportation, Dick’s Towing, Ed’s Towing and Lowry’s Towing.