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Local News

Fiery crash shuts down I-55 during rush hour in Will County

One person died and northbound Interstate 55 was shut down for almost 10 hours after a fiery crash near Wilmington Thursday.
One person died and northbound Interstate 55 was shut down for almost 10 hours after a fiery crash near Wilmington Thursday.

One person died and northbound Interstate 55 was shut down for about 10 hours after a fiery crash near Wilmington Thursday.

Illinois State Police responded about 5 p.m. Thursday to a multi-vehicle crash on northbound I-55, just south of Lorenzo Road at mile marker 239, according to a news release from ISP.

Preliminary investigation showed a semitrailer was driving north on I-55 toward a construction zone in the area, where traffic was backed up. The truck driver failed to stop before rear-ending a pickup truck. That started a chain reaction, police said.

The pickup struck another semitrailer, which hit the passenger vehicle in front of it. The passenger vehicle also struck another passenger vehicle. Five vehicles in total were involved in the incident. The two semitrailers and one of the passenger vehicles then caught on fire.

The driver of the first semitrailer to begin the chain reaction was pronounced dead at the scene. The Will County Coroner’s Office had not released any information on the deceased individual as of Friday morning. The pickup truck driver was seriously injured and taken to an area hospital, but no one else reported injuries, according to the release.

Emergency responders closed northbound I-55 until about 2 a.m. Friday, police said. Traffic was rerouted via Route 129 in Wilmington, while debris was cleared from the area. State police are investigating the incident and did not release any further information about the individuals involved.

“Please use caution when approaching all construction zones and be aware of the signage that is posted miles before the construction zone begins,” police said in a Facebook post Friday.

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