STAFFORD TOWNSHIP — A local restaurant owner died Thursday night after crashing into the back of a crash attenuator vehicle preparing to set up a left lane closing for construction on Route 72, police said.
Officers responded to the scene at 9:30 p.m. A preliminary investigation indicated Timothy Kohlheim, 36, was driving west in the left lane at the time of the collision.
Kohlheim was pronounced dead at the scene. The Manahawkin man owned Shore Fire Grille, a restaurant with locations in Stafford and Surf City. Both locations were closed Friday, according to a post on the Shore Fire Grille Facebook page.
A GoFundMe page set up for the family had raised more than $25,000 within hours of being posted.
The crash attenuator vehicle’s driver, Nicholas Manzoni, 25, and a passenger, Ric Peters, 24, both of Little Egg Harbor Township, both sustained minor injuries and were transported to Southern Ocean Medical Center in Stafford for treatment.
The area near the collision was closed to traffic for about three hours.
The Stafford Township Fire Department, EMS and paramedics responded.