File Photo – Lake County Sheriff’s Office | Photo: Woo-Sung Shim / Lake and McHenry County Scanner

The sheriff’s office says a bicyclist suffered life-threatening injuries after being struck by an SUV whose driver was reportedly distracted by young children in her car near Wauconda.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office and Wauconda Fire District responded around 7 a.m. Sunday to the area of Route 176 and Fairfield Road in unincorporated Wauconda for a crash involving a bicyclist.

Sheriff’s deputies arrived and found the bicyclist, a 48-year-old Waukegan man, with critical injuries, according to Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli.

A preliminary investigation shows a Dodge SUV was traveling southbound on Fairfield Road just north of Route 176.

The bicyclist was also traveling southbound and on the right side of the roadway, Covelli said.

The 24-year-old Palatine woman driving the Dodge reported she became distracted by young children in her car.

She turned her attention away from the roadway and the Dodge veered to the right.

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The Dodge struck the bicyclist, causing the bicyclist to strike the front of the Dodge and the Dodge’s windshield.

The 48-year-old man then fell underneath the SUV after hitting the windshield.

Deputies arrived and attempted lifesaving measures on the bicyclist.

He was transported to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville with critical, life-threatening injuries.

The occupants of the Dodge, including the driver and two minor children, were uninjured.

Fairfield Road between Route 176 and Bonner Road was shut down for several hours for a crash investigation.

The crash remains under investigation by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Technical Crash Investigations Unit.