Highway breakdown causes fatal crash
A series of mechanical mishaps led to a traffic crash fatality Tuesday evening on Interstate 55 near the Poplar Street Bridge, according to Illinois State Police.
Mark A. Morris, 53, of Curryville, Mo. was pronounced dead at 6:31 p.m. in the Gateway Regional Medical Center emergency room in Granite City, according to the Madison County Coroner’s Office.
A silver Dodge Charger driven by Morris ran out of gas on Interstate 55 at milepost three about 6 p.m. on Tuesday, said ISP Trooper Calvin Dye Jr.
Morris stopped the Charger on the edge of the shoulder with about 18 inches of the car in the roadway, Dye said. A black Kia sport utility vehicle headed in the same direction on Interstate 55 broke down in the lane next to the Charger, Dye said. Morris went to the front of the Kia and stood in front of it, looking under the hood.
That’s when a red Chevrolet Tahoe came up behind them and swerved to avoid the Charger and hit the Kia and Morris, Dye said.
Morris was thrown about 200 feet, Dye said.
When a trooper arrived on scene, Morris was unconscious, not breathing and had extensive head trauma. He was transported to Gateway Regional Hospital in Granite City where he was pronounced dead.
Three of the four lanes of Interstate 55 were shut down for two hours following the collision.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether anyone was cited.
Funeral arrangements for Morris are pending at Waters Funeral Home in Vandalia, Mo.