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There’s no doubt about it, this winter has been difficult for individuals residing in communities throughout the nation, including those in Franklin County, Ohio. The cold and snow has affected many in a variety of ways. Perhaps most notably, it has made it difficult to navigate local roads.

Heavy snow results in snowplows being called out to clear area roads. The record amount of snow Columbus has experienced this year–51 inches–has made it necessary for snowplows to be on the roads more frequently than past years. As is the case with any motor vehicle, the more time spent on the road, the higher the risk that it will be involved in a crash. Snowplows are not an exception.

The excessive amount of snow the state has experienced this past winter is likely contributing to the number of crashes that have occurred involving snowplows. Compared to last year, that number is up by 28, to 80. According to a spokesman for the Ohio Department of Transportation, all but 22 of those accidents were the fault of other drivers. Fortunately none of the crashes were fatal.

Of course all motor vehicle accidents could result in serious injuries or even death. This is particularly true when one of the vehicles involved is larger and heavier than the other, like snowplows are. To try to keep the roads safer while plows are on them, throughout the years ODOT has made changes to try to make the plows, which are often out during periods of poor visibility, easier to see. These measures include a public awareness campaign and the addition of green flashing lights.

When someone is injured in a crash with a snowplow or another vehicle, it is possible that a personal injury lawsuit could be filed against the negligent party. These cases are sometimes complicated, but when successful, are usually worth it.

Source: The Columbus Dispatch, “ODOT snowplows involved in 80 crashes,” Rick Rouan, Feb. 25, 2014