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Law exempts town vehicle in accident with civilian

At about 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 23, it started to snow heavily and Roxanne Czerewko decided to leave work early to beat the bad weather and messy roads. Going about 25 mph down Plant Road, Czerewkowhose husband is an employee of Spotlight Newspapersnoticed the roads getting slick and a snow plow coming towards her.

"The plow was traveling quite fast and started to come over into my lane, so I maneuvered my car practically onto the shoulder. The plow clipped the front of my truck, spun it up and I ended up in a ditch," said Czerewko.

In the moment when the plow hit her truck and she was airborne, Czerewko said she thought she was going to die. Usually in control and the self-proclaimed "rock" of her family, Czerewko said she was in too much pain to think straight and couldn't speak.

"The plow driver came to say sorry but I was terrified and couldn't respond," said Czerewko.

There were a group of people standing in a front yard across the street who saw the accident, said Czerewko, and one of the women told the plow driver, "don't you think about leaving until you know that woman is okay."

"People saw what happened and one woman came to let me know she would help me if I needed it. She said she saw the plow traveling way too fast and confirmed that he came into my lane," said Czerewko.

Czerewko went to the emergency room by ambulance and had x-rays on her neck. She ended up with some bruises, sprains and a whole lot of achiness. As of Monday, March 1, she was still out of work and returning to the doctor.

But Czerewko's nightmare continued to unfold in the days after the accident. When handling the insurance side of things, she discovered that according to the Town of Halfmoon, employees operating public vehicles are exempt from liability, under New York State Law, and the town would not pay for any damages.

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