News From Terre Haute, Indiana

October 11, 2013

Workers injured by impaired driver

State Police say driver nearly seven times past legal limit

Tribune-Star staff report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — A highway worker was injured Thursday morning, and a motorist who tested nearly seven times the legal limit for intoxication was arrested as the result of a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 70 near the U.S. 41 interchange.

Stephen C. Harrold, 63, West Terre Haute, was found to have blood-alcohol test of 0.54 percent, Indiana State Police said in a press release. To be legally intoxicated in Indiana, a driver must test 0.08 percent or higher.

Harrold was not injured in the 8:46 a.m. crash in the eastbound lanes of I-70, but he was arrested on multiple charges.

Sgt. Joe Watts of the Indiana State Police said Harrold was medically cleared at a local hospital before being taken to the Vigo County Jail. Harrold preliminarily faces two counts of injury to a highway worker, both class-D felonies; one count of driving while intoxicated above 0.15 percent, a class-a misdemeanor; and one count of driving while intoxicated, a class-C misdemeanor.

Harrold, police said, was driving a pickup truck that struck two orange construction barrels placed near the center of the road in a construction zone. His truck then entered the “closed for construction” passing lane, traveling for about 1,548 feet before rear-ending a parked pickup truck occupied by two employees of Wabash Valley Asphalt, the company handling the construction.

The impact forced both vehicles into the median about 68 feet from the initial collision point, Watts said.

One of the workers, 34-year-old Michael K. Crossley, Clinton was transported by co-workers to Terre Haute Regional Hospital where he was treated for rib pain and internal pain. He was later released. The other worker, John M. Gabbard, 30, Terre Haute, complained of minor pain and sought treatment on his own.

The right driving lane was the only lane open for traffic when the crash occurred, police said. The Indiana Department of Transportation and the construction companies had warning signs and electronic arrow boards in place to warn motorists of the closed lane.