COITSVILLE, Ohio (WYTV) – First responders from three different fire departments and a local ambulance company had their skills tested Tuesday morning by a grinding three-vehicle crash in Coitsville Township.
It happened just after 8:30 a.m. at the intersection of US Route 422 and Bedford Road, near the offices of Victory Christian Church.
The crash involved a car, a pickup truck and an SUV.
One victim was trapped in her car for close to 90 minutes.
“We found when we got here, one vehicle off the road with heavy entrapment and we went to work to get her out,” said Coitsville firefighter/EMT Mathew Smith.
Damage was heaviest to the car, a Mercedes Sedan, driven by 78-year-old Joyce Caleris of Lowellville. The Ohio State Highway Patrol said she pulled out from Bedford Road onto 422 into the path of the two other vehicles.
“The pickup truck then struck that vehicle, which forced it into another vehicle that was westbound,” said OSHP Lt. Brad Bucey.
The Mercedes was then pushed into a ditch.
While the other drivers weren’t badly hurt, Caleris was pinned inside her wrecked car. Coitsville called for mutual aid from Poland and Campbell. At one point, nearly a dozen firefighters and EMTs were in the vehicle, trying to get the woman out.
“Anytime you have that much damage that’s pressing on the patient, we have to make sure we take our time just to make sure we get them out safe,” Smith said.
Finally, after nearly an hour and a half, crews were able to free the victim by using a chain.
“We actually had to use a billboard on the side of the road for leverage to move the dash off the patient,” Smith said.
Caleris was taken to St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital with serious injuries.
The cause of the crash is still unknown and is under investigation.