Investigation continues in deadly Turnpike crash

Ohio Turnpike fatal crash

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The investigation continues into a deadly crash on the Ohio Turnpike.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is waiting on test results to determine if the driver who crashed into the back of another vehicle along the Turnpike in Austintown on Wednesday had alcohol or drugs in his system.

According to an OSHP press release, the Canfield Fire Department and an Ohio Turnpike employee responded to an unrelated crash on the Turnpike.

A Nissan SUV, driven by Karen Zorn, 27, of Maryland, was stopped behind the fire truck when it was rear-ended by a 2012 Dodge pickup truck driven by a man from Indiana. The force of that rear-end collision killed Zorn and caused her car to catch on fire.

The force of the pickup truck’s collision with Zorn’s car forced the fire truck to side-swipe the Ohio Turnpike truck, injuring the driver, Michael Earnest, 52, of Ohio.

The pickup was also towing a car hauler, which overturned into the left-hand lane, striking two passenger vehicles as they were passing the scene. That accident injured one driver, David Heath, 71, of Illinois, and did not injure David William, 64, from Pennsylvania.

The man from Indiana who drove the truck was flown to St. Elizabeth’s with non-incapacitating injuries.

Investigator are working to obtain a search warrant to examine the pickup truck’s engine control module which should reveal mechanical data, including the driver’s speed and engine control, and if he tried to apply his brakes.

Police will also work to determine how long the driver was on the road to see if fatigue played a role in the crash.

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