Suspected drunk driver poses as panhandler after hitting ODOT truck on I-90

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CLEVELAND– The man who hit an Ohio Department of Transportation truck pretended to be a panhandler to avoid arrest.

It happened at around 2 a.m. Thursday on Interstate 90 near East 152nd Street in Cleveland while a maintenance crew was patching potholes.

According to ODOT, a driver hit the work truck parked on the berm. One employee was in the truck and he was not injured.

The driver fled the scene, but was found nearby posing as a panhandler with a laundry basket and a wad of cash, according to Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers at the scene.

He was taken to MetroHealth Medical Center then the county jail. The highway patrol said he was under the influence and in possession of narcotics.

ODOT said there were warning signs before the work area.

“We can’t say it enough, motorists must slow down and move over for all roadside workers. It’s the law! In 2018, ODOT crews were struck 200 times statewide while working on our highways. Four construction workers were killed in 2018, which includes one ODOT employee,” said Amanda McFarland, ODOT spokeswoman.

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