DUBLIN, OH (WCMH) — It could be seen for miles. An inferno halting traffic on the northwest side. Following Monday’s tanker explosion, new questions emerge about the safety of the US33 East ramp to I-270 North.
Dublin resident Jane Doyle, “I was devastated that the city and state paid all that money and time to fix it and here it happened in the worst spot possible. Then, I feel terrible for the poor man who lost his life. I think it’s unfortunate.”
Tanker driver Duane Brodman worked for Lykins Energy Solutions based in southwest Ohio. The company confirmed their driver’s identity in a statement on Tuesday.
On January 23, 2017, one of Lykins Energy Solutions’ tanker trucks driven by Duane Brodman was
involved in an accident in Columbus, Ohio, and Mr. Brodman was killed.
We are deeply saddened by the loss of our friend and co-worker. Duane Brodman had been a
member of the Lykins team for nearly three years. He was wonderful, dedicated, hard-working and
enthusiastic about his job, and a great family man. He worked tirelessly for the company and we are all
better people for having Duane in our lives. The Lykins team is a family. Duane was part of our
corporate family, and he will be missed.
Everyone at Lykins extends our deepest sympathies to Duane’s family and friends. Our thoughts and
prayers are with them during this difficult time.
Doyle says she has used the ramp that’s less than four months old and never had a problem. She explains, “I thought it was perfect. I didn’t see anything wrong with it. I was pleased that after all that time it was finished.”
Other drivers raised questions about the ramp’s 55 miles per hour speed limit and questioned the difficulty of a lane merge in the middle of a curve.
Driver Liz Givens says, “I don’t want to be next to someone, especially a semi. I would get a little nervous. But I go at least once a week, if not three times a week to school over to Sunbury.”
Dublin police records show there have been five accidents on this ramp since it opened last fall. Ohio Department of Transportation officials say the ramp is safe and the configuration is common.
ODOT District Construction Administrator Brian Hupp says, “You see this (ramp configuration) a lot of places. It meets all of our design standards you see across the state, the same type of ramp.” He continues, “As long as people are traveling at the speed that is posted it is a safe design.”
Still, Hupp adds this fiery crash will lead to more discussions about any changes that might be needed to this stretch of road, “Definitely something we will look at, but like I said this design is in place all across the state, has been used successfully other places.”
ODOT also announced they are working to have the ramp opened by Thursday morning.