In an appalling turn of events, a tractor-trailer hauling metal pipe struck and injured a pedestrian in Pittsburgh, and the driver of the truck fled the scene rather than remaining to render aid.
The trucking accident took place near the Somerset Township, on Interstate 70. The accident happened near exit 84 at approximately 5:45 am, about a mile east of the exit. The pedestrian is 36 years old, and is listed as being in serious condition at the Pittsburgh hospital he was taken to by EMTs. According to hospital records, his name is Ralph Robert Allen of Ellsworth, and he is at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital.
According to state police, witnesses report that the driver of the truck hit the pedestrian, and immediately stopped his vehicle. Then after hesitating, he fled the scene instead of calling for aid. Police are on the lookout for the truck, which has been described by witnesses as a tractor-trailer with a brown cab, hauling a flatbed full of metal pipe.
In addition to the impact and Allen’s injuries, traffic on I-70 was shut down until about 7 am Thursday morning.
Hit-and-run laws in Pennsylvania are very clear about driver responsibilities in the event of an accident.
“General rule. The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury or death of any person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close thereto as possible but shall then forthwith return to and in every event shall remain at the scene of the accident until he has fulfilled the requirements of section 3744 (relating to duty to give information and render aid). Every stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary.”
Violating this general rule is classified as a third-degree felony, with punishment including but not limited to a minimum of 90 days in prison and a $1,000 fine. If Allen dies, the driver will be looking at a minimum of a year in prison and more than double the fine.