Semi, Jeep collide; two injured

MILAN TWP. A 40-ton semi blocked all lanes of U.S. 250 near Mason Road for several hours Wednesday a
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010



A 40-ton semi blocked all lanes of U.S. 250 near Mason Road for several hours Wednesday afternoon after it collided with a Jeep Cherokee.

The driver of the semi, Thomas L. Rusynyk, 57, of Monroeville, was flown to St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center in Toledo. He suffered neck and back injuries, said Sgt. Rick Reeder of the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Sandusky post.

He was in stable condition Wednesday night, troopers said.

The driver of the Jeep, Juliette Blinco, 58, of Lorain was taken by ambulance to Fisher-Titus Medical Center in Norwalk.

"I heard a noise and didn't think much of it," said Kelly Pollard of Sandusky. Pollard was working at Subway at U.S. 250 and Mason Road when the crash happened at about 1 p.m.

"It was pretty bad," she said, adding that she ran outside to help EMS workers treating the crash victims.

Pollard, who identified herself as a state-tested nurse aide, said she held equipment for the LifeFlight attendant and took some drinks out to the workers.

"The truck driver was more concerned about the people in the other vehicles than himself," she said, adding that he was pinned in the cab of the vehicle.

The crash remains under investigation, but troopers believe the Jeep was heading north on U.S. 250 and entered the semi's path when Blinco tried to turn west on Mason Road.

A Ford Explorer driven by Norwalk fire Chief Doug Coletta, 52, was hit when the semi turned over. Coletta was not injured, troopers said.

The Jeep sustained heavy front-end damage and was towed away, Reeder said.

Two hours after the crash two wreckers, positioned on either side of the semi, were able to lift the enormous vehicle off its side.

It was carrying powder cement in a dry bulk trailer, Reeder said.

Milan Township firefighters stood by in case the semi caught fire. The Erie County Sheriff's office also assisted at the scene.

This isn't the first time an accident has happened at this intersection, Pollard said.

"People are in too big of a doggone hurry," she said. "It's either this intersection or the one down by Huron-Avery Road."