October 22, 2014

Medina
Mostly cloudy
45°F

Truck rear-ends one semi, hits parked truck along I-71

By Steve Grazier and Maria Kacik Kula

MONTVILLE TWP. — One driver was flown to Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center after two tractor-trailers collided Tuesday afternoon on Interstate 71 south.

A hospital spokeswoman said Larry Bowman, 47, of Gahanna, was in stable condition Tuesday evening.

Larry Bowman, 47, of Gahanna, was listed in stable condition at Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center after his tractor-trailer crashed into a parked truck on Interstate 71 south in Montville Township on Tuesday afternoon. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY STEVE GRAZIER)

Larry Bowman, 47, of Gahanna, was listed in stable condition at Cleveland MetroHealth Medical Center after his tractor-trailer crashed into a parked truck on Interstate 71 south in Montville Township on Tuesday afternoon. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY STEVE GRAZIER)

The Medina post of the Ohio Highway Patrol reported that at 1:04 p.m. Bowman was driving his truck south on I-71 when he struck the semi in front of him driven by James Hutchinson, 52, of East Point, Ga.

The front right tire on Bowman’s truck apparently blew out after the crash, the patrol reported, and he veered off the road and struck an unoccupied truck on the side of the highway.

The driver and a passenger of the unoccupied truck were outside fixing a flat tire.

Leon Kunze, a California truck driver who witnessed the crash, said he saw Bowman’s truck swerving several times before striking the parked truck.

Kunze said the two changing the tire apparently saw the semi coming and ran for cover.

“It was pretty crazy,” Kunze said.

Trooper Steve Robison said the accident is under investigation.

He said it’s not known why Bowman’s truck struck Hutchinson’s semi to begin the crash.

He said drivers on the interstate called 911 about four miles prior to the crash to report Bowman’s erratic driving.

“There were a couple 911 calls that he had been swerving all over the road,” Robison said.

Besides the patrol, firefighters from Medina city and Medina Township, along with officers from the Medina and Montville police departments responded.

Contact Steve Grazier at (330) 721-4012 or sgrazier@medina-gazette.com. Contact Maria Kacik Kula at (330) 721-4049 or mkacik@medina-gazette.com.