It seems as if every few days either I-70 or I-71 appears in the news because of a serious traffic accident. In some cases, these accidents lead to large pileups, severe injuries and even fatalities.
According to the Ohio Department of Transportation, although the I-70/I-71 “downtown split” in Columbus accounts for only 6% of the freeway, it claims 27% of accidents in Franklin County. Ohio State Highway Patrol reports that more than 2,300 crashes have occurred on I-70 in Clark County alone over the last five years.
What causes these accidents? A few common factors include:
Increased traffic levels have led to many projects aimed at expanding roadways, including I-70. Projects that expand two-lane stretches of the highway to three lanes should improve traffic flow and reduce the number of accidents. Clark County officials agreed that, given the approximately 60,000 vehicles traveling through the county on I-70 every day, expansion was necessary to protect drivers.
According to ODOT’S numbers for 2017, more than 13,000 drivers crashed when something in their vehicle distracted them – all in a single year. Ohio’s new distracted driving law went into effect in October of 2018, addressing the growing problem of accidents caused by drivers’ attention being pulled away from the road. Some argue the current law does not go far enough, calling for stronger penalties for distracted driving.
If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident on Ohio’s I-70 or I-71, you are not alone. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Talking to an experienced personal injury attorney can help you determine the best way to move forward.