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Woman struck by car on Tarentum Bridge airlifted to hospital

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Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012
 

The busy Tarentum Bridge lanes into New Kensington were closed for hours Friday night after a pedestrian was struck by a car shortly after 9 p.m.

According to police, the pedestrian, a woman whose identity was not available, was walking in one of the traffic lanes leading from Tarentum into New Kensington when she was struck.

There is no pedestrian sidewalk on that side of the bridge. New Kensington Police officer Dino DiGiacobbe said motorists reported that she was walking near the concrete median barrier in the middle of the bridge.

The extent of the woman's injuries were not known. DiGiacobbe said she was conscious when ambulance crews arrived and was able to talk with them.

She was flown by emergency helicopter to a Pittsburgh hospital.

DiGiacobbe said the initial investigation indicated that the motorist was not at fault in the accident and likely would not face charges.

The incident, however, snarled traffic both on the Tarentum Bridge and downriver at the New Kensington Bridge, which was clogged with motorists detoured there from the accident scene.

The New Kensington-bound lanes remained closed for more than two hours as accident reconstruction personnel investigated the accident.

DiGiacobbe said the accident was the second time yesterday that police responded to a report of someone walking in those traffic lanes.

At about 4 p.m. yesterday, police responded to reports of a man walking in the same area but he was gone by the time police arrived.

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