A District 1 Illinois State Trooper was injured Monday evening when his squad car was side-swiped by a semi tractor-trailer during a routine traffic stop in Interstate 39 between Ill. 64 and 72.
The crash occurred at approximately 6:43 p.m. and affected three vehicles besides the squad car and semi.
Illinois State Police said the trooper, who they did not identify, was inside his squad car conducting a traffic stop on the right shoulder of I-39 northbound at milepost 108 in Ogle County, with his emergency lights activated.
While he was stationary on the right shoulder, his squad car was sideswiped by the semi, driven by Adam Toure, 58, of Chicago.
According to a press release, preliminary reports indicate the semi was traveling in the right lane and attempted to move into the left lane, which was occupied by another commercial motor vehicle.
At this time, the semi struck the commercial motor vehicle traveling in the left lane, before taking evasive action, and veering back into the right lane.
When the semi veered back into the right lane, the trailer swerved onto the right shoulder and side-swiped the driver side of the trooper’s squad car, causing extensive damage.
The driver side of the passenger vehicle the trooper had pulled over was also side swiped.
A fifth vehicle sustained damage from debris in the roadway caused by the crash, but was not directly involved.
The trooper suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported to a local area hospital for treatment and has since been released. No other injuries were reported.
Toure was issued citations for violation of Scott’s Law and improper lane usage.
When approaching an emergency vehicle, or any vehicle with their hazard lights activated, drivers are required to slow down and move over and change lanes if possible.
This year alone, the ISP has had nine troopers struck, one fatally, while handling on-duty incidents.
“We would like to ask the public to please remain aware of their surroundings while driving. If you see an emergency vehicle with their lights activated, you must first slow down, and proceed to move over, if it is safe to do so,” said District 1 Commander Captain Matthew Hodgdon. “Our troopers risk their lives daily to protect the members of our communities. We ask the public to please obey all traffic laws, including Scott’s Law, to help safeguard the lives of our troopers, and all members of the public.”
District 1 encompasses Ogle, Lee, Carroll, and Whiteside Counties.