ASHLAND Four people were killed in a crash Wednesday night in Ashland County when a semitrailer hit the vehicle they were traveling in while they were pulled over for a speed violation.
According to a news release from the Ashland post of the Ohio Highway Patrol, troopers initiated a traffic stop on a 2009 Saturn Outlook for speeding in the southbound lanes of Interstate 71 south of U.S. 250. Initially, the vehicle was moving toward the shoulder, however the driver came to a stop in the far right lane, the news release states. The trooper gave orders over his public address system for the vehicle to continue off the roadway and pull onto the right shoulder. Seconds later, as the Saturn was moving off of the roadway, a commercial motor vehicle failed to move over for the traffic stop and struck the Saturn. The Saturn was forced off of the roadway, struck several trees and came to a stop with the commercial vehicle on top of it, the release states.
The Saturn had seven occupants and four were pronounced dead at the scene. The three remaining were transported to area hospitals. The release stated the Patrol was attempting to identify all the subjects and next of kin.
The driver of the semitrailer was taken to an area hospital with minor injuries.
Ashland Fire and EMS, Jeromesville Fire and EMS, Ashland Coroner’s Office, Ashland County Sheriff’s Office, Ashland Police Department, Ohio Department of Transportation and Aber’s Towing assisted at the scene.
The crash remains under investigation and no charges have been filed, according to a July 30 news release.
“The Patrol reminds motorists to move over or slow down when approaching any vehicle with flashing or rotating lights parked on the roadside,” the release states. “It’s not just the law, it’s the right thing to do.”