ERIE COUNTY, Ohio (WJW) – New video shows what drivers saw as they barreled into a 51-car pileup on the Ohio Turnpike.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol released the video to the FOX 8 I-Team now that the investigation into the deadly crash is complete.
Four people and one unborn child died in the crash. Troopers tell us 73 others reported injuries resulting from the massive crash that happened Christmas weekend.
Erie County Prosecutor Kevin Baxter said his office just completed reviewing the patrol’s report.
“We didn’t think the interest of justice would be served by prosecuting any of the individuals involved,” Baxter said Tuesday. “Here, the winter storm conditions on the day of the December 23, 2022 Ohio Turnpike accident were an ‘Act of God’ or nature that was so unusual and overwhelming that it was likely a major contributing factor in the pileup. The strong winds and severe and blowing snow resulted in whiteout conditions with low visibility. The slowing traffic for diminished visibility and road conditions were likely strong enough to cause the pileup by their own power, independently of potential negligence by individual drivers.”
The video that was released is from the dash cameras of drivers involved in the crash. It shows the pileup just beginning. Some people involved scrambled out of the wreckage before it got worse.
“There’s a principal in the law called Act of God or Act of Nature,” Baxter said. “ And with those circumstances, as we found in this particular case, it’s really tough to hold anyone criminally or even civilly liable in those situations.”