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New study to focus on I-85 crashes in Ohio

With heavy traffic, high speeds and frequent construction, Ohio's highways are no stranger to serious motor vehicle accidents. A recent uptick in crashes on Interstate 80 has officials and safety experts searching for solutions.

For example, one county saw three fatal accidents on a twelve-mile stretch of I-80 in the course of a year. In response, the Ohio Department of Transportation has begun researching crash records and other data to look for possible improvements to this dangerous stretch of highway. So far it is difficult to point to one major cause; distracted driving, driver inattention, speeding and heavier commercial truck traffic could all be factors.

In addition, a recovering economy means more Ohioans using roads for commuting to work and for leisure. More activity by the gas industry in the state also means more traffic and, in some cases, more strain put on roads and infrastructure.

During a recent sentencing hearing in one such crash, a judge noted that poor setup or dangerous construction zones can be a major factor in crashes on I-80. ODOT's study will examine weather, road conditions, lighting and when during the day accidents tend to take place to try to find a root cause and improve safety.

Motorists who are injured in an accident caused in part by unsafe road conditions may have a claim not only against the driver who caused the accident, but also the municipality that maintains the road. The state is responsible for making sure that public services like roads are safe and fit for use.

If you or a loved one have been hurt in a crash, it is wise to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. They can help you determine the cause of the accident and pursue any appropriate claims for damages like medical bills or lost wages, allowing you to focus on recovering and getting back to your life.

Source: WFMJ, "Study underway to address crash concerns on I-80," Lindsay McCoy, Nov. 27, 2012

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