One person died and two others were injured after a fiery crash on I-55 at Damen Avenue early Sunday morning.
Chicago firefighters and paramedics initially responded about 3:27 a.m. Sunday April 28, 2019 to a report of an auto fire on the outbound Stevenson Expressway (I-55) near Damen Avenue. Crews on arrival discovered the incident was a fatal crash with fire, and reported the incident was west of Damen Avenue in Lane 1 of I-55. Illinois State Police and IDOT immediately had all lanes shut down.
Chicago Fire Department Battalion 2 at 3:40 a.m. reported a 2-vehicle crash with one vehicle at the left shoulder and one vehicle in Lanes 1 and 2. The vehicle in Lanes 1 and 2 was an Uber vehicle that on fire, and paramedics were not initially able to access the patients in that vehicle.
One female adult was listed triaged Code Red (Triage Tags) from the vehicle at the left shoulder. The offending driver in that vehicle fled the scene on foot. From that vehicle, Ambulance 66’s crew transported their patient Code Red to Cook County Stroger.
After the fire was extinguished in the Uber car, Ambulance 19’s crew transported one patient from the Uber vehicle to Cook County Stroger.
Some traffic was allowed to pass on the right lane of outbound I-55, but at times all outbound lanes between California Avenue and Damen Avenue were shut down with traffic being forced to exit at Damen Avenue.
A third ambulance was requested at 3:50 a.m. to stand by. Ambulance 68’s crew was assigned an additional patient that was found near the crash scene. The patient was transported Code Red to Mount Sinai.
A fourth patient — a male patient who sitting in the back of a police vehicle — was transported by Ambulance 35’s crew.
Even after 9:00 a.m. the Stevenson Expressway (I-55) remained closed during investigation of the fatal crash scene, which was declared a major crime and crash investigation scene.
Police said an Uber driver with three passengers were in the Uber vehicle that was on fire after it was struck from behind.
Firefighters were able to rescue three of the four occupants of the Uber vehicle, but a female victim in the back seat was unable to be removed from the Uber car before she died, police said.
Police said the driver of the offending vehicle fled the scene, but that he was apprehended and arrested. A passenger of that vehicle was the patient that transported to Cook County Stroger Hospital in Ambulance 66.
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