MILWAUKEE (WITI) – Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele is reminding people to slow down or move over for work crews and emergency vehicles, especially on roads that may still be slippery. This, after a Milwaukee County highway worker was struck by a car while helping a driver whose vehicle was stuck in the snow on Monday, February 2nd.
The Milwaukee County Highway Maintenance Supervisor was hit by a car around noon Monday near 73rd and Silver Spring Drive. He was taken to the hospital with serious injuries. The employee was checking on conditions of the roads when he saw an elderly woman whose car was stuck in a snow bank. He got out of his truck and was helping the woman get her car back onto the road when he was hit from behind by another vehicle.
“This employee was trying to help someone in need and now he is in the hospital. This incident should be a wake-up call for everyone to slow down. You have to be careful. Lives are at stake. There are County workers that take their job very seriously, and we want to get the roads cleared as soon as possible, but you have to let us do that job and our workers need to know they're safe,” County Executive Abele said.
"When I came out of my apartment, I noticed a woman was coming eastbound and getting past the pole, her car swerved around and jumped up top the bank, and then the city worker got out and tried to assist her -- thought she was hurt. She was fine," Missy Pierce said.
Missy Pierce saw what happened and jumped into action.
"He went to get a shovel and he was trying to dig her out. Next thing you know, another car comes -- same area, slid, turns and BOOM -- smashes him in the middle. He falls and he's screaming and screaming. He's trying to get up and blood was gushing out of his mouth. I told him 'no - don't move. Just don't move.' I told him to just count and breathe slowly -- just to stay with me," Pierce said.
Pierce jumped into the man's truck and reached out to dispatch.
"Next thing I know they put him in a stretcher, took him to the hospital and I still don't know what happened. I still don't know if he's okay -- but it was so serious and so scary. It was just SMASH -- BOOM, and his body just smashed in the middle. The guy had to be going about 35 miles-per-hour. He skidded out of control and hit the County worker. It was an accident. It wasn't on purpose. It was just kinda a freak accident. Wrong place, wrong time. It was scary. I just feel sorry for everyone. The county worker was just trying to be helpful and it just turned out really bad for him. And the driver -- he was scared. Took full responsibility for the incident. The female driver was fine. She was just laying on the bank," Pierce said.
Pierce says she was happy to help the man who was just trying to help someone else.
"I did the best I could by trying to be calm and hopefully he'll be okay. He was just trying to be a Good Samaritan and help a woman out whose car just slid out of control and jumped the snow bank and was literally stuck -- four wheels on the snow bank. He was trying to dig her out -- and the car just came out of nowhere and hit him. People need to be more cautious when driving. Pay more attention. It’s a bad day. A lot of snow out. That didn’t have to happen if maybe the driver was paying more attention. But he said he lost control and it looked like he did because I seen the whole turn and I seen how her car was able to turn westbound when she was going eastbound. For the County worker though, I just hope the best for him and his family and I hope everything will turn out well," Pierce said.
Milwaukee police have cited the driver of the vehicle that struck the employee for driving too fast for conditions.