Smashed-up cars sit for days following crash in Downtown Cleveland

Published: Aug. 2, 2022 at 5:45 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - A pickup truck went out of control on East 12th Street in Downtown Cleveland last Wednesday night. It jumped a median and knocked down a tree and a light pole, before crossing over the median and plowing into 3 parked cars at the corner of 12th Street and Chester Avenue.

The pickup was towed away and there did not appear to be any serious injuries, but the cars that were smashed and undrivable sat, an, sat, and sat some more.

The cars sat so long, just outside of the 19 News studios that we decided to find out what the city policy was regarding towing cars that may not be blocking traffic but are certainly in the way of parking spots and just generally in the way.

The city responded to our e-mail, writing that a car involved in an accident that is blocking the flow of traffic is always towed immediately, but in other circumstances, when damaged cars are towed is determined on a case-by-case basis.

An hour after we sent the e-mail to the city, a city parking manager and supervisor showed up and said they were going to contact Cleveland police regarding the damaged cars and police would determine when and if the cars would be towed.

As police arrived they said that as a courtesy they always reach out to vehicle owners with a request to move any car that is damaged in an accident and then give owners a few days to secure a tow.

In this case, police said they had reached out on the night of the accident and had been able to contact all 3 vehicle owners who had agreed to secure a tow for their vehicles. But that never happened.

Police reached out a second time to the car owners in an effort to give them a chance to avoid having their cars towed to the city impound lot.

Officers said the owners had not responded and just hours later the tow trucks showed up to tow the cars out of the parking spots.

As the tow trucks showed up, one of the vehicle owners did as well, and managed to work a deal to have his car towed to his destination of choice rather than the city’s impound lot.

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