Ohio State Trooper and Cleveland Police Officer killed months apart near same mile marker on I-90

Posted at 11:55 PM, Jan 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-25 08:14:20-05

Two Northeast Ohio law enforcement officers were struck and killed by vehicles near the same mile marker on I-90 within a span of four months. 

Cleveland Police Officer David Fahey, 39, died Tuesday after being struck outside of his car while assisting in an accident. 

Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper Kenneth Velez, 48, also died Sept. 16 when he was struck outside of his vehicle while conducting traffic enforcement. 

Both incidents happened near Mile Post 164. 

According to data collected by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, an average about about 13 officers across the country are struck and killed by vehicles each year. Preliminary data shows that 15 officers were struck and killed in 2016. 

Nick Breul, Director of Officer Safety and Wellness told News 5 that two deaths in Cleveland in nearly the same spot is unusual, according to the data. 

“That’s not common to have them occur in the same location like that especially during separate types of activity,” Breul explained. 

He said that the level of driver impairment would be key in this investigation. 

Breul also said the engineering of the road would also need to be taken into consideration given the proximity of both incidents. 

Independent transportation engineers told News 5 that while they could not say whether or not the stretch was “safe,” it should be investigated. 

A spokesperson for The Ohio Department of Transportation, District 12, provided the following statement: 

The Ohio Department of Transportation dedicates about $102 million annually for safety engineering improvements on any public roadway – one of the largest state investments in the nation. Each ODOT District has a Safety Review Team that analyzes crash reports from law enforcement agencies across the state to determine if there is a need for safety improvements.