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Crashes On Turnpike Snarl Traffic



Traffic on the Ohio Turnpike was snarled for hours following two collisions on the Ohio Turnpike during the overnight hours of Tuesday Wednesday, Aug. 14-15.

Jeffrey Rogge, 47, Swanton, was listed in critical condition Monday after the two crashes.

Rogge was flown by helicopter to the St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center, Toledo, Monday morning, after he was injured in the first of two crashes.

Information released by the Ohio State Highway Patrol stated the first crash occurred about 11:58 pm, Tuesday, Aug. 14, at the 48.3-mile marker, about four miles west of the Toledo Airport-Swanton exit.

Rogge, driving a tow truck, was assisting Willard Wheeler, 60, Detroit, Mich., whose semi had broken down on the eastbound side of the toll road.

A second semi, driven by Kendall Ray, 48, Louisville, Ky., was traveling east and collided with Wheeler’s disabled truck, which was pushed in to Rogge’s tow truck.

Rogge and Wheeler were trapped between the vehicles.

Wheeler was taken by ground ambulance to the University of Toledo Medical Center, where he was in fair condition late Wednesday morning. No information on Wheeler was available Monday.

Ray was not injured.

Crash Number Two

The second crash occurred at 1:18 am, Wednesday, Aug. 15, when a semi driven by Alexander Larin, 29, Elmwood Park, Ill., collided with another truck that was stopped in the eastbound right lane at the 46.6 milepost because of the first crash.

Larin’s semi then struck a passenger car and another semi before coming to a stop.

Larin was taken to the University of Toledo Medical Center by helicopter ambulance. UTMC had no listing for him, but a spokesman for the OSHP said Larin was in critical condition.

Occupants of the other vehicles received minor injuries.

Investigations are still pending, and no charges have been filed.

Backup

The eastbound lanes of the turnpike were closed for about 7 hours. Eastbound traffic diverted off the turnpike at the Delta-Lyons interchange, which is located at the 39.8 milepost.

Traffic remained backed up Wednesday, as crews cleaned up the wreckage.– David Pugh



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