Eight-Vehicle Crash on I-24 Leaves Multiple Injuries

Eight-Vehicle Crash on I-24 Leaves Multiple Injuries

JOHNSON COUNTY — An eight-vehicle crash on Interstate 24 near the Interstate 57 interchange left fire and numerous injuries in its wake on Friday afternoon in Johnson County.

Illinois State Police reports indicate that the accident occurred in the westbound lane near milepost 1.5. One semi and seven passenger vehicles were part of a pile-up resulting in numerous injuries.

A preliminary investigation revealed that a semi driven by 37-year-old Nathan A. Fast struck the rear end of a Toyota Corolla without reducing speed. Fast advised that he thought he had fallen asleep. A chain reaction crash then followed involving six other vehicles.

The crash resulted in a fire that detroyed the semi, the Corolla and a Toyota 4Runner. The fire then spread to a tree line adjacent to the Interstate but was quickly contained by the Lake of Egypt Fire Department.

Good Samaritans reportedly pulled all occupants of the burning vehicles to safety, saving all of their lives int he process. The Good Samartians also pushed away the Corolla from the burning vehicles so that it’s passenger could be extricated.

Fast was uninjured as was his 11-year-old passenger. The driver of the Corolla, 21-year-old Brant A. Francis of Paris, Missouri, suffered minor injuries. His passenger 52-year-old Barbara J. Francis was airlifted to a regional hospital.

The driver of a GMC, 38-year-old Lawrence H. Sutton of Jackson, SC, was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries. One GMC passenger, 65-year-old Lawrence H. Sutton of New Ellenton, SC, also suffered minor injuries. Another passenger, 57-year-old Peter D. Karmar of Sweetwater, Tenn., suffered major injuries and was airlifted to a regional hospital.

The Toyota 4Runner’s driver, 59-year-old Naeen A. Shaikh of Paducah, KY, and the passenger, 51-year-old Mark K. Riley of West Paducah, KY, both suffered minor injuries and were transported to a local hospital by ambulance.

A Nissan Altima, Ford F-250, Honda Odyssey, and Toyota Tundra were also involved in the chain reaction crash. The drivers of the Ford and Nissan were injured as was a passenger in the Nissan. 40-year-old John M. Boss of St. Paul, MO, suffered minor injuries and was transported by ambulance to a local hospital along with his juvenile passangers: an 11-year-old male, an 8-year-old female, a 6-year-old male, and 10-year-old male all of St. Paul, MO.

The driver of the Tundra, 53-year-old Yvonne R. Gentry or Hazelgreen, Ala., was able to transport herself to a local hospital. All involved vehicles, except for the Tundra had to be towed from the scene.

I-24 eastbound was closed for about an hour to land a medical helicopter. Westbound lanes were closed for approximately 5 hours for investigation and clean up.

Fast was charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid a crash and driving while fatigued.