Snowplow hits car in New York state; city says plows are exempt from the rules of the road

U.S. & World

Corning, N.Y. (WETM) – It was a shocking moment after a Corning resident discovered her 17-year-old daughter’s car was damaged by a snowplow.

On Feb. 2, Rachel Moshier and her daughter were at a colleague’s home watching the Big Game. Some party-goers were outside the home when a plow truck went by and a loud crash occurred. People ran inside the home, talking about a crash, and that’s when Moshier’s daughter went outside.

“My daughter went outside and called me hysterical saying ‘Mom come out here! It was my car,'” said Moshier. “I could not believe the damage.”

An off-duty officer attended the party and saw the damage to the vehicle. He called the City of Corning’s Department of Public Works about the incident. The gentleman on the phone said, “I think that was me. I just went up that street.”

He also contacted an on-duty officer who came and took a report. The on-duty officer noticed remains from the vehicle on the truck.

“There was glass from my daughter’s mirror and red paint from my daughter’s car on his truck,” said Moshier. “He said, ‘Yes, I must have done it. I didn’t know I did it.'”

Moshier didn’t believe that the driver did not know the crash occurred. After many days of trying to contact Corning officials, Moshier’s ex-husband went to the Corning City Hall to talk to them in person.

“We can give you a claim to file, but it’s probably not going to go anywhere because of this law,” said Moshier.

According to New York State Law: Section 11-03 of New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, “Maintenance forces, while engaged in highway snow and ice control operations are exempt from the rules of the road.”

The two still filed a claim but were declined by the insurance company regarding compensation.

“We’re smalltown people who work locally. We don’t know about all these laws, we don’t have a lot of money to get lawyers,” said Moshier. “It’s just very frustrating that no one will help us and we’re expected to now take care of it.”

The family is now responsible for up to $1,500 in vehicle damages.

Rachel turned to Facebook to share her story and let her friends know about both the incident and the state law.

“I was expecting maybe 20-30 comments from friends and family.” Moshier continued to say:
“It is now up to seven thousand shares.”

Rachel soon found out that she was not the only one who has experienced this situation, nor the only one who didn’t know about the law.

“My main aim was to let people know and vent to my family,” Rachel said. “I want to say this law needs to be changed and they need really need to look into these cases by cases, instead of one big law.”

18 News confirmed with the Corning Police Department about the incident, but officials had no comment about it.

18 News also reached out to the City of Corning’s Public Works Department but was told the head of the department was out for the week and unable to comment on the incident.

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