Snow plow driver praised for steering Sylvania wrong-way driver to safety
SYLVANIA, Ohio -- They often don't get much respect, but now one Ohio Department of Transportation snow plow driver is being cheered for what he did to save lives.
Around 2:30 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 26, highway tech George Seambos was driving his snow plow along US 23 in Sylvania near the Michigan border. Seambos was on snow and ice patrol in the frigid temperatures. While driving, he noticed a set of headlights coming right at him in the wrong direction.
Immediately, Seambos called 911 and turned on his flashers to warn oncoming traffic. He then maneuvered his truck in a way that forced the driver of the wrong-way vehicle to turn around. Seambos then followed the vehicle, of which he assumed an intoxicated person was driving, until police caught up to it.
The driver of the wrong-way vehicle was charged with operating a vehicle under the influence, and due to the quick-thinking of Seambos, a 17-year ODOT veteran, possible tragedy was avoided.
"Every day, ODOT employees do amazing things but what George did for everyone on the road that night is beyond amazing," said ODOT Director Jerry Way. "We will never know if his actions avoided a tragedy...but what we do know is George had the courage to do something..."
The courageous act came less than a year after multiple wrong-way crashes in northwest Ohio killed five six people in a two-week span. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, alcohol is the leading factor in wrong-way crashes that kill hundreds of people each year.