May 18, 2024

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Truck crashes into Region office

Truck crashes into Region office

TRAIL CREEK — A local business owner was still a bit unnerved Tuesday, a few days after a vehicle traveling off a highway crashed into his office close to where he was seated.

“I feel lucky to be alive,” said Donnie Pawlik, owner of Amish Structures at 8555 W. U.S. 20 near Evergreen Plaza.

Pawlik, who lives in the Trail Creek area, said he was in his office Saturday afternoon doing paperwork when he heard a crash and got up from his desk to investigate.

His badly damaged extended cab pick-up truck was halfway inside his showroom, with furniture and other belongings strewn on the floor. The vehicle came to rest about 10 feet from where Pawlik was seated on the other side of an interior wall.

The truck, while parked outside, was sent crashing through the brick exterior wall sideways after being struck by another vehicle.

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“I realized I almost died,” said Pawlik when describing how he felt when he first saw the damage.

“He was very shaken up,” said Coolspring Township Assistant Fire Chief Warren Smith, who was among the emergency responders at the scene.

Smith said a NIPSCO pole and gas meter were also taken out in the crash.

Trail Creek police had still not released any details about the accident Tuesday afternoon.

However, Pawlik said the westbound driver traveled over 200 feet off the four-lane highway before the collision.

Smith said more damage, and even serious injury to Pawlik, could have resulted had there not been a vehicle in the path of the driver to absorb the blow.

“It’s a good thing his truck was in the way because it probably could have killed him,” he said.

The company sells prefabricated garages, sheds and outdoor furniture made by the Amish in Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Pawlik said the business he’s owned since 2014 also does concrete and excavating work.