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Dave’s Vacation: Wrecks Put the OH in Ohio

Watershed Post/Flickr Creative Commons

Last week, my vacation began on Tuesday. And, after I got into Ohio, I wondered how things might have gone if I had left even a little bit earlier. Why earlier? Why Ohio? Well, I’ll tell ya. I’ve taken many vacations where I’ve crossed the Ohio River into Cincinnati. The view you get of the Queen City from the top of that hill on Interstate 71 just before you descend to the bridge is, maybe, the best in the whole country. What an incredible skyline. And then…you have to drive through it.

Now, despite the fact that Cincinnati traffic is no prize, I’ve seldom had trouble in the past. This year was different, however, as a semi decided to jackknife. In a busy metropolitan area on an interstate highway, that’s never good. That cost me about 45 minutes.

When I got to Columbus, a city of just under 2 million people–and an odd one, too, since you can’t even see it until your seven miles out–the traffic reporter on the radio revealed that two vehicles decided to play bumper cars in a tunnel. Terrific. There went another 30 minutes…and I probably got off lucky. But neither of those setbacks came close to what happened in eastern Ohio on Interstate 70.

Just past Zanesville, I came up over a hill and the traffic had ground to a halt. It wasn’t even creeping along. After a good 15 minutes of just not moving, I turned off my motor. Then, like everyone else on the road with me, I got out of my car.

I Googled Ohio traffic info and specified Interstate 70. I learned that a pickup truck hauling a horse trailer had crossed the median somewhere up ahead and collided with an 18-wheeler. They had rounded up two of the horses, but the third had run off. Plus, as expected, there were multiple injuries with the accident. And who knows how bad the vehicles looked?

Well, I pulled my camp chair out of the trunk and set it up…right there on Interstate 70…and read. Yes, I can now say that there was a time in my past when I sat on a busy U.S. interstate highway–right on it–and read a book.

It took three hours for crews to clean everything up and get everyone to hospitals. Fortunately, none of the injuries were fatal.

What a day.

One semi. Two cars. Three horses.

Yep, day one of my trip was as, difficult…as 1,2,3.

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