‘Momentarily Distracted’ Trucker Entrapped After Plowing Into Big Rig
Elkhart County, IN – A trucker who police say was distracted when he drove his semi-truck into the back of another big rig along the Indiana Toll Road on Thursday was fortunate to escape serious injury.
According to the Indiana State Police (ISP), the accident occurred just after 2:45 p.m. near mile marker 104, approximately three miles west of the Middlebury Exit.
An ISP preliminary investigation indicated that Georg Kirkilewski, 68, of Peoria, IL, was operating a red 2020 Mack towing an empty tanker trailer in the right lane and following behind Carlos Jacome, 31, of Chicago, IL, who was driving black 2019 Freightliner and towing a box trailer loaded with plastic trays.
ISP said traffic was “stop-and-go due to a construction zone being taken down,” when Kirkilewski became “momentarily distracted.”
The Mack collided into the rear of Jacome’s trailer.
The force of the impact of the crash caused Kirkilewski to become entrapped inside his tractor.
He had to be extricated by Bristol Fire and EMS before being taken to a nearby hospital, ISP said.
Fortunately, Kirkilewski’s injuries were not life-threatening and Jacome did not report any injuries.
The accident did however bring traffic to a standstill as crews worked to clear the wreckage.
Westbound traffic was diverted off the Indiana Toll Road at the Middlebury Exit until approximately 4:50 p.m. when traffic was allowed to get past the crash on the left shoulder.
Both lanes were reported to be opened at approximately 5:30 p.m., ISP reported.
While the outcome could have been much worse, it’s yet another reminder to always remain vigilant when behind-the-wheel.