Chesterton Tribune



CPD: INDOT's snow covered traffic signals on Indiana 49 behind two crashes

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Chesterton Police said that snow-covered traffic signals on Ind. 49--the jurisdiction of the Indiana Department of Transportation--were the proximate causes of two separate traffic accidents on Wednesday.

No one was injured in either crash.

The first occurred at 12:49 p.m., police said, when Roger A. Smith, 54, of Coloma, Mich., was southbound on Ind. 49 and rear-ended a second vehicle which had stopped suddenly at the intersection of 1100N.

The driver of the second vehicle was Linda C. Martin, 57, of Michigan City, Martin advised police that she “came to an abrupt stop due to the traffic lights being snow-covered.”

Police estimated total damage to Smith’s 2009 Toyota Tacoma and Martin’s 2008 Honda Civic at up to $5,000.

According to police, the second accident occurred more than four hours later, at 5:11 p.m., when Michael A. Konopacki, 70, of Dune Acres, was southbound on Ind. 49 and--believing he had a green light, though “having trouble seeing what color the traffic light was due to the traffic light being covered with snow”--proceeded into the intersection of Gateway Blvd., where he collided with a second vehicle eastbound from the Indiana Toll Road and turning left onto northbound Ind. 49.

The driver of the second vehicle was Marshall G. Aurand, 29, of Liberty Township.

“I was able to observe that the traffic lights for the southbound lanes of Ind. 49 were covered with snow and hard to see,” the investigating officer stated in his report.

Police estimated total damage to Konopacki’s 2003 Toyota Corolla and Aurand’s 2010 Nissan Altima at up to $5,000.


Posted 3/13/2014