Employee Dies After Vehicle Drives Into Diley Ridge Medical Center
An employee at Diley Ridge Medical Center in Canal Winchester has died after a truck drove into the building Friday morning. Authorities identified the driver as Raymond Leinendeck, 45, of Fairfield County.
“We are very sad to report we lost one of our Diley Ridge employees today,” said Michael Englehart, interim CEO of Mount Carmel Health System, at a press conference Friday afternoon. “Our hearts go out to their family and friends, and we pray for them during this tremendously difficult time.”
Two others were injured in the incident, one of whom was in critical condition. All were standing at the front desk when the truck hit. The names of the victims have not been released.
The facility has been closed due to "significant" structural damage.
Fairfield County Deputy Sheriff Alex Lape said the crash appeared to be purposeful. There was no sign Leinendeck applied pressure to the brakes before the crash.
“It's still pretty early. Charges will be filed, no doubt, of some sort or another,” Lape says. “And as far as the intention, can't speak to the individual's intentions, but by all appearances, it appears it was a deliberate act.”
According to Sheriff Dave Phalen, Leinendeck was upset by a psychological evaluation he'd just undergone at the hospital.
Mount Carmel's website says Diley Ridge Medical Center is home to an emergency department, 10 in-patient beds, an imaging center and women's health services. Englehart says it’s unclear when the hospital will reopen.
“We’re working with the Sheriff’s Department as they investigate what occurred,” he says.
With the facility closed, local authorities are planning alternative coverage options for patients.
“There's a plan being put in place, specifically for walk-in patients to the ED, because they can't take ambulances or anything,” said Mike Little, Violet Township’s Chief of Fire. “All other testing, all other outpatient testing is going to be rescheduled at other Mount Carmel facilities or other Fairfield Medical Center facilities.”