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Semi driver speaks after accident on I-70 EB

BROOKVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – It was a bad day and evening on the roads, with parts of both I-75 and I-70 shut down at times.

A semi went down an embankment right after three cars crashed in front of it on I-70 this afternoon.

State troopers say at least three different cars were involved in the crash and, luckily, the semi that went down the embankment did not collide with any of those cars.

The couple inside that tractor-trailer, Shawn McDaniel and Emily McKenna, say they fear it could have been worse.

"I was saying ‘Oh God, Oh God’ because he just avoided hitting like four cars, swerving behind and going into the ditch, so it really did avoid a major catastrophe out here," said McKenna.

Driver Shawn McDaniel said, "We avoid accidents, that's what we need to do. That's what we do."

Troopers say another semi was driving erratically or had a mechanical problem shortly before 5 Monday afternoon when cars behind it started slowing down.

They say that is when a red Chevrolet rear-ended a gray Mercedes - and then struck a Buick.

Troopers say the Mercedes may have hit a fourth vehicle.

Officials say one woman was treated on scene for a concussion - and a 5-week-old baby was taken to Dayton Children's Hospital for observation.

"One of the cars was on the shoulder of the road. Then I avoided it, and I just went in the ditch. I hit the ditch and that was it," said McDaniel.

Troopers say distracted driving appears to be a likely factor in the crash. McKenna says she believes it's a reminder to be careful on the highway - especially around tractor-trailers.

"Don't drive up on them. Don't slam on your brakes like that. You got to be careful. They could be carrying a heavy load," she said.

The tractor-trailer had some damage but was able to continue on to Pennsylvania.

Troopers say they're still questioning the people involved - and aren't sure yet if any charges will be filed.

The highway fully reopened - around 7:30 this evening.

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