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UPDATE: Village Worker Struck by Vehicle After Woman Drives Onto Sidewalk

According to police, car went onto Fairmount Road sidewalk to avoid blocked road, striking worker

Attempting to avoid a roadblock on Fairmount Road, a driver proceeded onto the sidewalk, striking and injuring a village worker clearing debris in the hard-hit Willard section, according to police.

Multiple sources say Rob Schmidt, an equipment operator with the Streets Department, was struck head on by the driver just after 7:30 a.m.

"It was a low-impact crash," Police Chief John Ward said Friday afternoon.

Witnesses say Schmidt was wearing a bright colored vest when struck by a woman driving a Kia Sportage. Schmidt was taken to Valley Hospital with leg and knee injuries. He also complained of back pain, Police Chief John Ward said.

"I'm happy his injuries were not life-threatening," Ward said. "I checked on him to make sure he was OK."

While the police chief said he could not comment on specifics as the investigation remains ongoing, he said at least one summons is pending. The driver of the vehicle – who has not yet been identified but is a Ridgewood resident, according to multiple sources – is likely to receive a reckless driving charge.

The charge carries with it five points on one's license, a possible suspension of the license, a fine upwards of $200, and potential jail time.

"We apologize for any delays," the chief said, addressing frustrated motorists. "But we must accomplish our mission of clearing debris while ensuring safety."

I urge that motorists be careful and cognizant that workers are still out clearing streets. Please respect the barriers and police tape that are up."

[Editor's note: This report was last updated at 3:40 p.m. Friday.]

Hillari Ramsay November 04, 2011 at 04:07 PM
Unbelievable.
J.D. Luke November 04, 2011 at 06:32 PM
What do the road crews need to do, put out spike strips?
RdgwdGRock November 04, 2011 at 06:43 PM
what happened to the motorist? issued a tickek, arrested, what? now that a village employee has been hurt, perhaps there will be real action regarding safety. hope that the worker sues the motorist.
James Kleimann November 04, 2011 at 07:24 PM
I've updated the story, folks.
Michael Sedon November 04, 2011 at 07:27 PM
I would hope the police arrested this motorist in this instance. If James' reporting is accurate, and I'm sure it is, it sounds like the driver blatantly disregarded a roadblock put up by village workers to protect them from vehicles while they did their job. It's not an accident when the driver went out of his or her way to circumvent a roadblock and committed the very injuries that the roadblock was erected to prevent. It's moronic and mind blowing. That's like me thinking that I want a better parking spot at the Daily Treat so I drive my car through the front window and pull up next to the counter. Where's your head there driver?
J.D. Luke November 04, 2011 at 07:27 PM
Thanks for the update. I'd like to know how a sense of entitlement develops in someone that allows them to think it's perfectly OK to go around barriers and drive on a sidewalk to avoid going a few blocks out of the way.
Irene Talerico November 04, 2011 at 11:13 PM
I say take the driver's license away, fine him/her big time, and the worker should sue for everything. People need to be knocked off their egotistical pedestals. The arrogance is amazing. Knock 'em down a few notches, PLEASE. I think that's the only way people will stop hitting pedestrians. We need tighter laws and greater consequences.
Laurie Goodman November 05, 2011 at 12:07 AM
"Please respect the barriers..."? How about Please respect the fact that cars aren't allowed on sidewalks. Oy.
RdgwdGRock November 05, 2011 at 08:26 AM
Hope this driver's license is suspended and that she serves jail time.
Dell November 05, 2011 at 01:15 PM
The fine for reckless is $250.00. That is it.

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