Cicada Causes Car Crash as Large Swarms Emerge in Ohio

A swarm of cicadas caused an Ohio man to crash his car on Monday after the insects flew in through his car window.

The man was driving near 2600 Riverside Drive in Cincinnati when a cicada flew in through an open window and struck the driver in the face. He was temporarily stunned and crashed into a utility pole.

Police have said that the man was saved from serious injury by his seatbelt and airbags, although his car has been totaled. Cincinnati Police Department added "The heavy swarm in the area and dead cicada on the floorboard proved he wasn't lying."

In a tweet, the police used a hashtag that said: "Nothing good happens with cicadas."

As a result, Cincinnati drivers have been warned to "remember to keep [their] windows rolled up until our little red-eyed friends are gone."

#Crash single car into a pole at 2600 Riverside Drive. Caused by a cicada that flew in through an open window striking the driver in the face. #nothinggoodhappenswithcicadas #cicadas2021

— Cincinnati Police Department (@CincyPD) June 7, 2021

The incident that occurred on Riverside Drive may not be as unusual as it first seems, as WHIO7 reported that Cincinnati police have said that "cicadas have historically been attributed to car crashes when they emerge."

One Cincinnati-based Twitter user said on Sunday: "Man, a cicada flew in my car yesterday—I was ready to leave the whole car," adding, "It happened as soon as I got in the car. I definitely would've crashed if I was driving."

Another Cincinnati resident responded to news of the Riverside Drive crash and said: "This almost happened to me today, only I almost hit my neighbor and her dog. Cicadas, I'm pretty much done with you guys."

Cincinnati reporter Courtney Wheadon shared the story on Twitter and said: "I was just talking to my coworker about this earlier! He jokingly put the window down and I was terrified. Now I have proof that cicadas can be dangerous. So glad this driver is okay."

Cicadas are at or near their peak in Cincinnati, according to WLWT5, which reported on the emergence of periodical Brood X cicadas. These cicadas appear every 17 years after living underground.

Billions of cicadas are appearing in the Cincinnati area and will remain for a few weeks before dying off in late June and into July.

Professor Gene Kritsky, the dean of behavioral and natural sciences for Mount St. Joseph University, told WLWT5 that the areas of Cincinnati that will be most affected by the cicadas are Delhi Township, Green Township, Price Hill, and Hyde Park, based on the numbers of the 2004 emergence.

As well as Ohio, the cicadas will also emerge in Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C.

Magicicada periodical cicadas, members of Brood X, on June 1, 2021, in Burtonsville, Maryland. A man in Cincinnati, Ohio, crashed his car after a cicada flew in through the open window. Chip Somodevilla/Getty