A Rumpke driver has died after being hit by a passing motorist in Middletown on Monday. David Evans was 52 years old. He had been airlifted to Miami Valley Medical Center in Dayton, where he succumbed to his injuries. The motorist, a 41-year-old man, “sustained serious, but non-life threatening injuries and was taken to Atrium Medical Center,” per Cincinnati.com.
At this time, the crash is still under investigation, and no charges have been filed.
Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Mr. Evans, a beloved figure in his neighborhood who had volunteered at the Harvest Home Fair for 35 years, per WCPO 9. His death has had a profound impact on the community, and we hope the investigation wraps up quickly, so they might find some closure.
“This is not an isolated incident.”
Mr. Evans had done everything right. As FOX 19 Now reported, “Evans was dressed in appropriate reflective safety gear and all truck safety lights were in operation at the time of the accident.” This information has been confirmed by multiple news outlets, quoting Rumpke officials.
Unfortunately, this is not the first time this type of fatal truck collision has occurred. The risk is so great that 247WallStreet.com lists “refuse and recyclable material collectors” as the 6th most dangerous job in America. Per their research, “The most common cause of fatalities... is transportation incidents, which account for 67.7% of deaths. While many of these accidents involve the collectors’ trucks, 29% are classified as ‘pedestrian vehicular incidents,’ which includes accidents in which a worker is struck by someone’s car.”
WCPO 9 reported that three different Rumpke drivers were involved in crashes like this about 14 years ago, and a driver named Steve Finch was killed after being hit by a passing motorist. Finch’s death spurred the company to push for a “slow down to get around” law, which would require drivers to slow down and change lanes (whenever possible) when they share the road with waste collection trucks. That led to the creation of Senate Bill 127, which has passed both the Ohio House and Senate; it is now awaiting a signature from Governor Kasich. If he signs it, Ohio will become the 17th state to pass such legislation.
Protecting sanitation workers in our towns
The incident that led to Mr. Evan’s death may still be under investigation, but we, personally, have seen many cases like this before – not just with sanitation truck drivers, but with police officers, firefighters, EMS workers and volunteers, and tow-truck drivers. We have worked with pedestrians and bike riders, and offer assistance to people who have been injured trying to fix a flat on the side of the road, for instance.
In almost all of these truck accident cases, driver inattention or alcohol or drug use is involved. It makes a terrible event even more tragic, because it could have been preventable. We fully support Senate Bill 127, because we know that it can help save lives.
At Crandall & Pera Law, we offer comprehensive representation in courts throughout Ohio and Kentucky. It is our privilege to fight on behalf of injury victims and their families, and to help they secure the compensation they need to protect themselves. To learn more about our services, or to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer, please call 877-686-8879 or fill out our contact form.