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Whitaker Borough Gas Station Owner Seeking Help Of County, State Officials To Help Slow Motorists Down

WHITAKER (KDKA) - A gas station owner in Whitaker Borough is fed up because nearly a dozen vehicles have sped off a bridge and crashed onto his property over the last few years. He wants county and state officials to help solve the ongoing speeding problem.

Security cameras captured the terrifying moment when a car barreled into the Gulf gas station parking lot Thursday.

The business on Route 837 in Whitaker Borough sits at the end of the Rankin Bridge.

The vehicle hit two cars, went airborne, and rolled over a third car.

"At least 3 to 4 feet in the air," said the owner of the gas station, Bob Ackerman.

He was not surprised this happened.

"It sounded like a train wreck, that's what it sounded like. I've heard the noise before, so I know what to expect," said Ackerman.

Ackerman said another crash happened 12 days ago. He has surveillance video of that one too.

He tells us there have been 9 accidents in 6 years.

The business has been hit and so has a gas pump.

He tells us one of the first crashes was in April 2015, when a driver took out a traffic signal and landed on 2 parked cars.

"The speed limit on the bridge is 25 mph, no one goes 25 mph. If they would even maintain 35 mph, it would be okay. You can't go 70 or 80 on the bridge and expect to turn when you get to the end," Ackerman said.

Ackerman and his employees are worried next time, someone could lose their life.

"We can't even operate our business. When you go out the door, you must look both ways like you're crossing the street," he said.

They think something needs to change on the bridge.

"We're looking for rumble strips on the bridge and a light to tell you how fast you are going on the bridge," Ackerman said.

They hope Allegheny County officials will rev up some plans soon.

"This morning, Bob Macey from Allegheny County council contacted us and said he's going to set up a meeting with Allegheny County, the state, and some other officials," Ackerman states.

Ackerman said he has spent $15,000 to $20,000 because of the crashes over the years.

He also told us they were going to block off the Rankin Bridge with tow trucks and pickup trucks on Friday, but they changed their plans since the County said they will set up a meeting.

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