Sunday, September 21, 2003

Speed trailer slammed by speeder


No injuries, but Miami Twp. police take opportunity to caution drivers

By Marie McCain
The Cincinnati Enquirer

MIAMI TWP. - It was a lesson in itself, say police in this western Clermont County township. A driver rammed a speed trailer - one of those gizmos parked alongside the highway that flashes oncoming traffic's speeds -- along Ohio 131 last month because he was . . . speeding, police say.

No one was injured. But the crash caused $2,340 in damages to the trailer, which goes for $10,000-$13,000 new, cops said..

Police cut the driver a break and didn't cite him because he returned and confessed to the accident. It's enough, said police Lt. Daryl Poe, that no taxpayer money will be used to repair the trailer since the motorist's insurance will be billed.

And, Poe said, authorities were amused by the irony of the situation.

It's indicative, Poe said, of what can happen when a driver isn't paying attention and follows other drivers too closely.

"What if there had been a person standing in the spot where the trailer was?" he said Friday.

The Ohio Insurance Institute, a Columbus-based trade association representing insurance companies statewide, said rear-end collisions are some of the most frequent accidents in Ohio.

In 2000, the most recent statistics available, more than 100,400 cases of this kind of crash were reported. About 55 were fatal, while 31,721 resulted in injuries. Another 67,544 caused property damage.

Poe declined to name the motorist because he wasn't cited, saying only that he was a Milford resident.

The incident happened Aug. 6, between 7 and 8 a.m. on Ohio 131 at Mount Vernon Drive. The driver told police he was rushing to get his kids to a sports event not far from the scene. He said he failed to notice that another vehicle was stopped at the intersection, waiting to make a left turn. He swerved to avoid hitting the car and instead hit the trailer.

The trailer, set up at about 7 a.m. that day, remains out of service, Poe said.

"Speed trailers can be repaired," he said. "Broken lives are irreplaceable."

E-mail mmccain@enquirer.com




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