Metro-East News

Semi, cars collide in I-64 construction zone; 2 taken to hospital

Crash on Interstate 64 backs up traffic

A crash Wednesday afternoon backed up Interstate 64 near Scott Air Force Base. KMOV video
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A crash Wednesday afternoon backed up Interstate 64 near Scott Air Force Base. KMOV video

With traffic slowed for construction on Interstate 64, a semi struck the back of a passenger car and drove up on top of the trunk and backseat, police said.

It’s the same scenario that has played out twice previously in the past month, said Illinois State Police Trooper Calvin Dye Jr.

The crash happened at about 2 p.m. Wednesday on I-64 eastbound near Rieder Road.

The semi struck the rear of the car, which was pushed forward and struck another car in front of it, Dye said. The driver and passenger only suffered minor injuries and were transported to a local hospital.

“If someone was in the backseat at the time ... they definitely would have been deceased,” Dye said. “People get warnings to slow down, and they don’t. They just ignore it.”

Traffic was severely backed up on I-64 eastbound Wednesday afternoon at about 2:30 p.m. because of a traffic crash near mile marker 21, near Scott Air Force Base, according to St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency. The crash involved a semi

This crash follows two large crashes on Interstate 55 within the past month, leaving five people dead. On Nov. 21, a semi driver did not slow down before crashing into seven cars, killing two women instantly. Two other women later died from their injuries.

In the same stretch of I-55, a semi driver looked down to pick up his tea Dec. 15 and rear-ended one car, causing a chain-reaction with nine other vehicles. A total of 10 people were injured, and one person died. Two have serious injuries.

State Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, sent a letter to the Illinois Department of Transportation seeking answers about the crashes.

“Clearly, there is a problem that needs to be addressed,” he said.

Dye said previously that it’s bad driving, not construction zones, that cause these crashes. Drivers aren’t paying attention and don’t slow down properly near construction zones, which can lead to crashes if large semi trucks don’t give themselves enough time to stop.

No citations have been issued yet in either I-55 crash, nor for Wednesday’s I-64 crash.