Turnpike Officials Kind of Admit Some Fault in February Pileup

Officials say the real issues in last month's 139-car pileup were the weather and bad drivers, though.

Officials admitted Tuesday to a state Senate panel to “gaps” in the response to the February 14 pileup on the Pennsylvania Turnpike that spanned two suburban counties and included 139 vehicles, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission head Mark “City of” Compton told the panel there were “gaps” in the response.

Amy Worden writes:

“We had limited resources to get to all incidents on the roadway. We were stretched thin,” said Compton. “We need to work on our response to large incidents.”

Sen. John Rafferty (R., Montgomery), chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, seemed exasperated over what he saw as the lack of timely response to the cascading rush-hour accident and remained unconvinced by the turnpike’s explanation.

“I can’t go back and undo the accidents, but I can work with you to make sure we have a better command structure and better communication,” Rafferty said.

KYW 1060 has a slightly different take, saying Turnpike officials pretty much just blamed the weather and poor drivers. Fifty-two citations have been issued in the 41 separate crashes that day last month — mostly for speeding.

You’re not going to believe this, but the Senate is proposing some new laws — and maybe that will prevent crashes or fix the slow response time, I dunno.

[Philadelphia Inquirer | KYW 1060]