Truck takes out pole, garage

LOWELL – A tractor trailer that jackknifed on Ohio 530, taking out an electric pole and skidding to a stop inside a garage on Walnut Street in Lowell, was the start of an accident-filled Thursday.

A name for the driver and passenger was not available Thursday, but both men were safe and were not transported to the hospital, said Josh Harris, chief of the Lowell-Adams Volunteer Fire Department.

According to Harris, the truck lost control at the bottom of a steep incline near the end of Ohio 530 early Thursday afternoon.

“He was loaded down and he came through and jackknifed and took out the pole,” said Harris, referring to a utility pole that snapped in two.

The semi slid across Walnut Street and into the bottom of a two story garage structure, taking out most of the wall.

Lowell resident Zachary Morrow lives in the house diagonal to the garage which was one of around 10 houses without power while American Electric Power worked to repair the broken pole.

“They told us they’d have it back on around dark,” he said.

Morrow said he was at home with his family when he heard the sound of squealing tires and ran to the window to look.

“He jackknifed and the part between his cab and trailer took out that pole and then kept sliding into the garage,” said Morrow, 26.

Having lived in the house six years, Morrow has seen plenty of cars coming down the hill have accidents, but Thursday’s was the worst, he said.

Morrow was the first to the semi, and was able to climb onto the cab and see that the driver and the passenger were not injured.

They were still in the cab when volunteers from L-A VFD arrived, said Harris, but the driver was eventually able to extricate himself and the passenger from the back of the semi’s cab.

“We had the Jaws of Life ready, but luckily we didn’t have to use them,” he said.

The volunteer firefighters did spend a couple hours cleaning diesel fuel off the ground where it had leaked from the wrecked semi.

In addition to L-A VFD, the Beverly Volunteer Fire Department, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Ohio Department of Transportation, and three tow companies responded to the accident, said Harris.

Meanwhile, the Marietta Police Department struggled to respond to dozens of minor traffic mishaps Thursday evening. A pickup truck struck a fire hydrant on Colegate Drive near Hadley Lane and several other cars became trapped in ditches or suffered minor fender benders.

Washington County Sheriff Larry Mincks declared a Level 2 snow emergency for the county around 5:30 p.m.

“People should not travel it it’s not necessary,” he said. “Employees should call their employers to see if it’s necessary before venturing out on the roadways.”

Mincks said dispatchers were handling a lot of minor accidents due to the icing roadways Thursday evening.

“We were getting a lot of fender benders, and there was one three-car accident on (State Route) 550,” he said. “But no injuries have been reported.”

The Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Marietta post reported similar mishaps on area roads, including one crash involving an Ohio Department of Transportation truck and a pickup near the 11-mile marker on I-77 around 4:30 p.m.

There were no major injuries reported from that accident either.

“All of the major roadways are driveable, but we are seeing a lot of wrecks. So drivers should use extreme caution if they’re out on the highways,” Trooper Chip Robinson said Thursday evening.

Sam Shawver contributed to this article.