Vehicle vs. big rig showdown on Ruffin Mill Road ticks off locals

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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- The video lasts just a few seconds, but long enough to see a small blue car driving down the dirt shoulder as a tractor-trailer passes by in the cars lane.

It's not the first time it's happened, but it should never happen.

Locals call the thruway Snake Road, but it is actually a short section of Ruffin Mill Road that is restricted to big trucks.

Cellphone video captured a big rig move into the car's lane on Ruffin Mill Road

Cellphone video captured a big rig move into the car's lane on Ruffin Mill Road

"For one thing, you've got a 110-ton bridge right down here and then this old road just isn't set up for them big trucks," says Steve Ventimiglia.

And it's the bridge that is one reason for the restriction, but the narrow, winding road is no place for semi trucks, most drivers will say.

Ventimiglia has been working in the area for about a week.


"Well, I see one of those 18-wheelers, usually about one a day, that will cut down this road and they're not supposed to," he says.

Many who drive this section of Ruffin Mill Road tell similar stories even though there are signs, flashing lights and a warning for tractor-trailer drivers to not follow their GPS.

Chesterfield County Police say in just the last 90 days they've responded to eight calls on this section of road due to tractor trailers.

VDOT says the section handles about 2,400  vehicles every day and within the last year, more signage has been added in the area to try to keep tractor-trailer drivers from turning and using the restricted section.