OSHP cruiser almost unrecognizable after weekend crash: ‘Move over, slow down’

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DEFIANCE, Ohio (WJW) — After a crash over the holiday weekend, the Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding drivers about what to do when a trooper is stopped on the shoulder of the freeway.

The crash happened around 2:30 p.m. Saturday on U.S. Route 24 westbound between Jewell and
Independence Roads in Richland Township.

The highway patrol said it happened when a 1998 Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck drove off the right side of the road hitting a patrol car, a 2019 Dodge Charger, and another vehicle, a 2009 Nissan Maxima, stopped by the trooper.

Sergeant Fernando Chavez of the Defiance Post had stopped the Nissan for speeding and was in the driver’s seat of his cruiser writing out a ticket when the crash occurred, according to a release from the highway patrol.

The driver sustained life-threatening injuries and was taken to Promedica Toledo Hospital while the highway patrol said his passenger, Steven R. Johnson, 52, of Bryan, succumbed to fatal injuries at the scene.

Sergeant Chavez, 46, sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was taken to Promedica Defiance Regional Hospital.

The Nissan’s driver and his passenger were also taken to Promedica Defiance Regional Hospital with possible injuries.

In a tweet, OSHP says if a patrol car is stopped on the side of the highway, move over for flashing lights and if you can’t, just slow down.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol was assisted at the scene by the Defiance County Sheriff’s Office, Richland Township Fire Department, Defiance Fire and Rescue Department, Ohio Department of Transportation and John’s Towing & Repair Service.

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