June 25, 2016

Mostly sunny

Car going 69 mph before fatal crash

COLUMBIA TWP. — A final crash report from the Ohio Highway Patrol states the Brunswick teenager driving the car that crashed June 3, killing him and three other teens, hit 69 mph before crashing.

The speed limit is 55 mph on that stretch of Boston Road, just east of Boone Road on the border of Medina and Lorain counties.

The Ohio Department of Transportation conducted a speed study following the accident and determined the speed limit should be lowered to 45, ODOT District 3 representative Christine Myers said Tuesday.

The Patrol report, which includes a reconstruction of the crash, also states that driver Jeffrey Chaya, 18, front-seat passenger, Blake Bartchak, 17, and backseat passenger, Julia Romito, 17, were wearing seat belts. Backseat passengers, Kevin Fox, 18, and Lexi Poerner, 16, were not wearing seat belts, according to the report.

Chaya, Bartchak and Poerner died at the scene. Fox died the following day at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland. Romito, the only survivor, was released from Southwest General Health Center a few days after the crash.

According to the Elyria post of the Patrol, Chaya’s 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier went airborne over train tracks that intersect Boston Road. Chaya then lost control of the vehicle, which went off the road to the right and then to the left, striking a tree and flipping back onto the road.