A 23-year old Amish woman, her husband and their two children were thrown from a buggy last year after a drunk driver hit them and attempted to flee the scene. Tragically, the woman died at the scene, according to a local news report. The year before, an Amish family of five sustained injuries when their buggy was rear ended by an older driver. Tragically, these types of accidents have not been uncommon in Ohio; however, the state is now taking action.

Recently, the United States Department of Transportation awarded Ohio a $9.6 million grant to help reduce number of car accidents with buggies. In total, the project will cost over $14 million. One of the first project initiatives will be to widen the roads in Geauga County, which is in the top five largest Amish communities in the nation and is home to over 10,000 Amish people.

According to the Ohio Department of Transportation, there were more than 1,400 car accidents with buggies since 2012. The Ohio State Patrol reported that over 700 people sustained injuries and at least 25 people died because of the accidents. Most of the accidents resulted from a motor vehicle rear ending a buggy.

Besides widening the roads, the state plans to make several other improvements to decrease the number of motor vehicle and buggy accidents. According to a recent article, some of the improvements will include:

  • Separate buggy lanes
  • Larger shoulders
  • Buggy detectors
  • Updated school zones
  • Road improvements
  • Increased signage

Construction will begin next year. It is important for motorists, pedestrians and buggy riders to proceed with caution. If you or someone you love sustains injuries from a car accident involving a buggy, consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your options.