Two men were hospitalized in critical condition after a semi-truck sideswiped two stopped vehicles and hit a man on Interstate 94 in Gurnee Thursday afternoon, fire officials said.
The Illinois State Police, Gurnee Fire Department and Libertyville Fire Department responded around 2:25 p.m. Thursday to Interstate 94 at mile marker 9.25 in Gurnee for a vehicle crash with injuries.
The incident occurred in the eastbound lanes of the interstate near Route 21.
Gurnee Battalion Fire Chief David Douglass told Lake and McHenry County Scanner that a passenger vehicle and a semi-truck were already stopped on the left shoulder after they were possibly involved in a minor crash.
The driver of the semi-truck, a man in his 50s, was walking around his truck and was on the passenger side when a second semi-truck sideswiped both stopped vehicles and hit the man.
The second semi-truck then crashed into the center barrier, Douglass said.
Firefighters arrived and found the driver of the first semi-truck on the ground.
He was transported in critical condition to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, Douglass said.
The man driving the second semi-truck was heavily trapped because the truck’s heavy load pushed into the cab.
It took crews around 50 minutes to extricate the man.
In addition to Gurnee and Libertyville firefighters, Douglass credited Ernie’s Wrecker Service for assisting in the extrication.
That driver was also transported to Advocate Condell Medical Center in critical condition.
The driver of the passenger vehicle was not injured and refused to be transported to the hospital, Douglass said.
The crash comes as Winter Storm Elliott continues to bring snow, wind and plummeting temperatures to central and eastern U.S.
Weather officials are warning motorists to avoid unessential travel due to hazardous road conditions.