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DOT Worker Dies After Being Struck on Route 8

State police continue to investigate fatal accident near Exit 29 near the Naugatuck town line.

A 21-year veteran of the Department of Transportation was killed on Route 8 Thursday after being hit by a truck just north of the town line between Waterbury and Naugatuck.

Daniel Dinardi, 41, of Rocky Hill, had pulled over in the northbound lane around 2:45 p.m. between exits 29 and 30 in Waterbury to pick up some debris on the highway, when he was struck by a passing tractor-trailer, said Lt. J. Paul Vance, state police spokesman.

Vance said there was no official DOT work operation going at the time, although Dinardi had activated his pickup truck’s hazard lights and was legally parked in the shoulder.

Emergency responders rushed Dinardi to Waterbury Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Judd Everhart, spokesman for the DOT, told The Hartford Courant that Dinardi was well known and liked around the DOT headquarters.

"As word spread around the building, people were crying and asking each other how it could have happened," Everhart told the Courant.

Route 8 northbound was closed until about 6:30 p.m. as an accident reconstruction team investigated the accident. Vance said the driver had stopped and pulled over after striking Dinardi.

The case remains under investigation by the state police.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman released the following statement regarding Dinardi’s death:

“We are extremely saddened by the death of Dan Dinardi. Our sympathies and prayers are with his family and friends as they are grieving his loss, and with his colleagues who have been deeply shaken by this terrible event. Connecticut has workers who, in the course of performing their jobs, are at risk every day."

The statement continued: "This tragedy reminds us to reflect on their efforts, and to recognize their dedication and commitment. We must do everything we can to keep our workers safe. We are grateful for Mr. Dinardi’s 21 years of service to the Department of Transportation, and all that he has done to make this state a better place.” 

Meliss March 23, 2012 at 12:48 PM
So very sad. He was most likely trying to remove debris that would keep the rest of us safe on the roads and gave dearly for it. Thoughts and prayers are with his family.
barb March 23, 2012 at 03:20 PM
very sad for his family, that should of never happen,poor guy doin his job and gets kill, didnt they have cautios sign on the highway to protect them from drivers on the highway, some people drive like u wouldnt believe, my prayers r with his family.
SILENT WOLF March 26, 2012 at 01:13 PM
I am not a trucker , but I can tell you that it is not only truckers that speed. Whenever I come upon a work zone I slow down and merge , but all I need to do is look in my rear veiw mirror and there comes that moron young and old alike trying to race up in front of everyone in line. When I see these Idiots coming I do whatever possible not to allow them to get up front. State Police should have their eyes open for these Morons.
CMG March 27, 2012 at 12:20 PM
Prayers to the Dinardi family....as for you Joe Norton, who said the trucker was speeding? You think truckers are the only ones that speed? I have been on a big truck several times. Let me tell you, the 4-wheelers do more harm than the truckers and they cut the truckers off all the time and cause them to slam on their brakes and try to stop an 80,000 lb. vehicle in an instant....unless any of you have had the time to spend a few weeks on a truck, DO NOT criticize the truckers please. To you JOE, you are so right!!! I watched a morton almost pull out in front of a fire truck on Rt. 8 last week because he was too much in a hurry that the van in front of him was going to pull out before him. And the "drop off" lane...that lane is not there for you morons to use to speed up to get ahead of the traffic and then cut off the rest of the people at the last minute. People need to slow down and pay attention. If you are late, then leave earlier, but don't jeopardize the lives of others because you are running late.
Conerned_Taxpaying_Citizen April 06, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Totally agree Joe. Maybe you can shed some light how a Truck cant hit a person though. I'm still so confused. I mean, it's hard tro believe the driver didnt see him. Was there a depth perception issue that truck drivers need to deal with? My condolences to the family. Very sad and it reminds me to ALWAYS slow down and MERGE!!

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