Toll collector killed by truck
By Peter Samuel
New York State Thruway lost a toll collector, Cheryl Anderson, 42, when she walked in front of a truck at the Henrietta toll plaza (IC-46) May 11. She was walking back to her toll booth after a break at 8:18am when she was hit.
It seems to have been one of those tragic things, a momentary lapse of attention on her part. The truck driver didnt see her. It was a big truck and he was up high. He got the green light and he went. It was a tragedy, we were told by Pat Cantiello a Thruway spokesman.
The accident was in a staffed lane. The toll plaza was closed for four hours for the removal of Andersons body and for the police investigation of the fatality. The dead woman had been a Thruway toll collector for 18 years, part-time for the first three years. She had worked at the Henrietta plaza since 1990. The Henrietta plaza is at the interchange of the Thruway with I-390 immediately south of Rochester in western NY state.
Cantiello said Anderson was walking in the prescribed path for getting to her toll booth. She says toll collectors are instructed to give way to vehicles getting the green light. Otherwise their instructions are to get eye to eye contact with the driver before stepping in front of their vehicle in order to establish that their presence has been recognized by the driver.
Anderson left a husband and 13 year old son.
Though it does nothing to reduce the grief of the family and friends it may increase it the cold fact is that work at toll plazas is, by most measures, rather safe. The Thruway in a press release said it was the first time in the 46 year history of the Thruway that a toll collector was killed on the job. The Thruway is the largest grossing toll road (as opposed to toll bridge authorities) in the US and one of the largest in the volume of toll collections. IBTTA says it has no accident data for the toll industry. Accidents are so rare there has been no demand to compile em.