November 21, 2014

Elyria
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Jackknifed semi snarls traffic

ELYRIA — A truck jackknifed Thursday on Schadden Road, forcing cars and trucks to go through a nearby parking lot to get to an industrial park and the Ireland Cancer Center.

The road was blocked for several hours after the accident, which occurred about 100 feet south of the where the road meets state Route 57.

BRUCE BISHOP/CHRONICLE
A tractor-trailer blocks Schadden Road off state Route 57 on Thursday after it got stuck making a turn.

The accident isn’t the first one, said Larry Sipley, president of Marathon Steel Products Inc., who called Mayor Bill Grace to the scene.

“The trouble is that we have only one way in or out,” Sipley said. “The area is growing like crazy — take care of us.”

Grace surveyed the blocked road with Assistant Safety Service Director Jim Hutchson. As they watched, two anxious motorists drove up, perplexed about the blocked road.

“We need to get to the cancer center right away,” a woman told the pair before she was directed to the makeshift detour.

Grace said the city is working to eliminate the sharp U-turn that motorists make while negotiating the turn at the 57 intersection.

The solution would be to lengthen Schadden Road to the west and install a traffic light for a 90-degree turn to the south toward the cancer center, Grace said. He also said the city would like to connect the industrial park to Lake Avenue.

Exactly when that will happen is undetermined because the city is in a budget crunch, Grace said.

Brian Stacy, a representative of the Ohio Department of Transportation, said Schadden Road was part of the 57 corridor study, but it is not part of the area contracted for review by the engineering firm KS Associates.

Elyria police Lt. Andy Eichenlaub said the truck driver was not cited in connection with Thursday’s accident.

Eichenlaub said the hairpin turn onto Schadden Road “is difficult to negotiate for long trucks.”

“It is a developing area and is going to have more and more traffic, but engineers are the ones who make those decisions,” Eichenlaub said of the roadwork needed.

Sipley, the president of Marathon Steel, said he hopes something will happen soon because Community Health Partners has been acquiring land in the area and more hospital facilities could be built.

Contact Cindy Leise at 653-6250 or cleise@chroniclet.com.