In honor of DOT maintenance worker Dennis “Matt” Howe, age 45 of Owego, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today directed flags to half-staff on all State government buildings. Howe died from injuries sustained last Wednesday when a tractor-trailer collided with a DOT truck in the work zone on March 13 in Nichols, N.Y.
According to the original Sheriff’s report, the crash happened between Exit 63 to Lounsberry and Exit 62 to Nichols. According to deputies, the tractor-trailer struck a DOT vehicle while passing by the work zone.
Deputies ticketed the tractor-trailer driver, who has been identified as Lawrence E. Faucett, age 37, from Pennsylvania, for moving from lane unsafely and failure to exercise due care – a violation of New York’s “Move Over Law.”
Flags will be flown at half-staff beginning today, March 19, until interment.
In a press release, Cuomo stated, “I am saddened by the loss of Matt Howe, a dedicated public servant and Department of Transportation employee. Since 2006, Matt served DOT Region 9 and the people of the State of New York honorably. As a maintenance worker, he was a jack-of-all-trades who was always eager to lend a hand to the team.”
The governor continued, “His death is a tragic reminder of the dangers our workers face every day braving the elements and our roadways, all while looking out for the safety of one another. There is nothing routine about what our maintenance forces do to keep New York’s highways safe, and we have zero tolerance for anyone who flagrantly puts the lives and safety of our workers in jeopardy. This year I called for stricter protections for transportation workers to send a clear message that New York stands with our workers.”
In honor of Matt Howe and his service to the people of New York, Governor Coumo directed that flags be flown at half-staff across New York State.
He concluded, “On behalf of the entire family of New York, I extend my deepest condolences to his friends, colleagues and the loved ones he leaves behind.”
A GoFundMe account was set-up to offset medical expenses for his family. In an update on the page, with funds now benefiting the family, donations can also be sent to the local VFW Post 1371, 207 Main St., Owego, N.Y. 13827. You can find the link here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/please-show-your-support-for-a-nysdot-worker.