(CHANNAHON) Lanes of I-55 were closed in both directions Wednesday morning after at least two crashes in southwest suburban Channahon.
One crash, which involved eight to 10 cars, happened at 5:49 a.m. near Arsenal Road, according to Illinois State Police.
Police said a separate crash happened about that same time in the northbound lanes of I-55 near the bridge over the Des Plaines River.
No injuries were reported as of 7:30 a.m., but all three southbound lanes were closed to traffic and traffic on the northbound side was only getting by on the shoulder, police said. Further details were not immediately available.
Snow was forecasted in areas south of I-80 through 9 a.m. Tuesday. The Illinois Department of Transportation warned drivers to be cautious of snow or ice-covered roads in the area throughout the morning commute.
(CHICAGO) A 51-year-old man was killed when a Metra train on the Union Pacific-Northwest Line struck a vehicle Thursday morning in the Norwood Park neighborhood on the Northwest Side, authorities said.
Emergency crews were responded about 7:10 a.m. to reports of a train striking a vehicle near Nagle and Northwest Highway, according to Chicago Fire Department spokesman Jeff Lyle. Details about the crash were not immediately known.
Inbound train No. 610, which was scheduled to arrive in Chicago at 7:22 a.m., struck the vehicle, according to a service alert from Metra.
Glen V. Robles, of the 6000 block of West Peterson, was pronounced dead at the scene, Lyle and the Cook County medical examiner’s office said. An autopsy was expected Friday.
A second man was fatally struck by a Metra train Thursday morning in northwest suburban Crystal Lake, the second fatal incident on Metra’s Union Pacific-Northwest Line train in one day.
Inbound train No. 636 struck Grant D. Jacobson, 25, of Crystal Lake, about 10:45 a.m. near the Crystal Lake station at 70 E. Woodstock St., according to Metra and Crystal Lake police.
Jacobson was killed, according to McHenry County Coroner Dr. Anne Majewski. Authorities were called when he was seen walking toward the incoming train as it entered the station. An autopsy was expected Friday.
No foul play was suspected, police said.
UP-Northwest Line trains were still experiencing extensive delays Thursday afternoon, according to Metra’s website. CTA is honoring Metra tickets on the Blue Line from Rosemont into Chicago until further notice.
Earlier Thursday morning, another UP-Northwest train struck a vehicle in the Norwood Park neighborhood on the city’s Northwest Side, shutting down the line for about three hours.
The crash happened about 7:10 a.m. near Nagle and Northwest Highway, according to the Chicago Fire Department. One person was pronounced dead at the scene.
A Chicago Police officer was among four people injured in a crash early Thursday on the Near North Side, fire officials said.
Paramedics responded about 3 a.m. to the four-vehicle crash at West Division and North Orleans streets, according to Fire Media Affairs Chief Juan Hernandez. One person was pinned inside a vehicle and had to be extricated.
The Chicago Police officer, a 45-year-old woman, was taken in critical condition to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Hernandez said.
Three men, all thought to be between 20 and 30 years old, were taken to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, he said. Two men were listed in critical condition and the third was in good condition.
Chicago Police did not immediately provide additional information on the crash.
(CUSTER PARK) Police said heavy rainfall played a role in a fatal head-on crash Saturday morning in southwest suburban Custer Park.
Cameron A. Latour, 18, was driving a Chevrolet Monte Carlo eastbound on Route 113 near West River Road in Custer Park when the car lost control and struck a westbound semi truck, according to the Will County coroner’s office and Illinois State Police. Custer Park is in unincorporated Will County, about 60 miles southwest of Chicago.
Illinois Sate Police Sgt. George Del Rio said the roads were wet and the Monte Carlo was likely traveling too fast for conditions.
Latour, who lived in Custer Park, was pronounced dead at the scene at 7:20 a.m., the coroner’s office said. A preliminary autopsy determined he died of multiple injuries he suffered in the crash.
The man driving the semi truck suffered minor injuries in the crash and was taken to Riverside Medical Center in Kankakee, police said.
By Michael Pearson, Faith Karimi and Hamdi Alkhshali, CNN
EgyptAir Flight 804 vanished from radar on its way from Paris to Cairo with 66 people aboard, the airline said Thursday.
The plane was flying at 37,000 feet when it lost contact overnight above the Mediterranean Sea, the airline tweeted. French President Francois Hollande said he was told the flight crashed, but Egyptian Civil Aviation Minister Sharif Fathi said he preferred to classify the flight as missing.
“We do not deny there is a possibility of terrorism or deny the possibility of technical fault,” Fathi said at a Cairo news conference. “I will continue to use the term missing plane until we find any debris.”
For now, finding the airplane and any possible survivors is the priority, authorities said.
Somber relatives gathered in Cairo and Paris airports, seeking word on their loved ones. They were taken to special centers at both airports, where translators and psychiatric support awaited. In Cairo’s airport, dozens of relatives paced anxiously in a building set aside for families. Some shouted at photographers taking pictures of them, while others berated officials over the perceived lack of information.
— Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos told reporters that search operations have not yet turned up anything.
— The airplane “swerved and then plunged” before descending into the Mediterranean, the Greek minister told reporters.
— Greek controllers tried to reach EgyptAir Flight 804 about 10 miles before it left the country’s airspace and for about 90 seconds after and received no response, the head of the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority told Greek broadcaster ANT1 TV.
— Prosecutors in Paris have opened an investigation into the disappearance of the plane, the office said in a statement. “No hypothesis is privileged or pushed aside for the moment,” the statement said.
The flight seemed to be proceeding normally until it approached Egyptian airspace. Greek controllers talked to the pilot when the plane was near the Greek island of Kea at 37,000 feet at an air speed of 519 mph. Everything seemed fine at that point.
At 3:27 a.m. local time, shortly before the aircraft was scheduled to exit Greek airspace, controllers tried to reach the pilots to transfer control to Cairo authorities. Despite repeated attempts, they received no response, the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority said. The plane passed into Egyptian airspace two minutes later. Forty seconds later, radar contact was lost, the authority said.
Weather conditions were clear at the time, CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri said.
More about the flight
The flight left Charles de Gaulle Airport at 11:09 p.m. Wednesday local time and was supposed to land in Cairo at 3:15 a.m. Thursday. Both the departure and arrival cities are in the same time zone.
Passengers and crew were from France, Egypt, Britain, Belgium, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Chad, Portugal, Algeria and Canada.
A majority were French and Egyptian — 15 and 30 people, respectively, EgyptAir said. Among those aboard: three children — two of them infants, said Capt. Ahmed Adel, a vice chairman at EgyptAir.
The Airbus A320 had routine maintenance checks Wednesday in Cairo before it left for Paris, an airline official said. Earlier Wednesday, the jet was also in Eritrea and Tunisia, data from flight tracking websites show.
There was no special cargo on the flight and no notification of any dangerous goods aboard, Adel said.
The plane has been part of EgyptAir’s fleet since November 2003, according to Adel. It had about 48,000 flight hours. The plane’s captain had about 6,000 flying hours, he said.
Egyptian and Greek military vessels and aircraft are searching for the aircraft and any possible survivors. Greece is looking about 130 nautical miles southeast of Karpathos island.
A distress signal was detected at 4:26 a.m. — about two hours after the jet vanished — in the general vicinity where it disappeared, Adel said.
He said the distress signal could have come from another vessel in the Mediterranean. Egyptian armed forces said they had not received a distress call.
If there are any survivors, there’s still a window to save them.
“The water temperatures in the eastern Mediterranean near Egypt are in the low 20s Celsius (mid to low 70s F),” Javaheri said.
“Survival times in such waters range from two to seven hours for the elderly or individuals in poor health, while they range anywhere from two to 40 hours for healthier individuals.”
A storm system could affect conditions in the region as early as Friday afternoon, Javaheri said.
Analysts weigh in
CNN aviation correspondent Richard Quest: “Planes just do not fall out of the sky for no reason, particularly at 37,000 feet,” he said, noting the aircraft vanished while cruising — the safest part of the journey.
David Soucie, a CNN aviation safety analyst: The first priority is to find survivors. “Find the plane, find the people, see if there are folks that could be rescued,” he said. “Safety people are looking at safety issues, maintenance people looking at maintenance issues, security people looking at security issues.”
CNN aviation analyst Les Abend: He said there are three possibilities: an explosion, something nefarious or a stall situation. “We’re in the very early stages of the investigation. Any good accident investigator will tell you, just put on the brakes a little bit and let this thing unfold. The 360-degree turn, that seems very abrupt. It’s not something I would do in any major emergency unless I was losing control of the aircraft,” he said, referring to Greece’s assertion the aircraft swerved 90 degrees left and then 360 degrees to the right before its descent.
Egypt’s aviation incidents
Egypt is no stranger to aviation disasters.
In March, an “unstable” man diverted an EgyptAir flight from Alexandria to Cyprus. The suspected hijacker later released all hostages and surrendered.
Last year, a Russian plane exploded midair over the Sinai Peninsula, killing all 224 people aboard. Egyptian officials initially downplayed Islamic militants’ claim that they brought down the jet, saying technical failure caused the crash.
And in October 1999, an EgyptAir passenger jet made a rapid descent, plunging almost 14,000 feet in 36 seconds.
The Boeing 767, en route to Cairo from New York, crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the Massachusetts coast.
Its debris was later found, but speculation remains on the cause of the crash that killed all 217 people on board.
(CHICAGO) Seven people, including three children, were injured in a crash Tuesday morning in the Avondale neighborhood on the Northwest Side.
The multi-vehicle crash happened in the 3200 block of North Milwaukee just after 8 a.m., according to Chicago Police. One of the vehicles crashed into a building.
Two juveniles in serious-to-critical condition, one juvenile in fair-to-serious condition, and three adults in fair-to-serious condition were taken to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, according to Fire Media Affairs. Another adult was taken in serious-to-critical condition to Illinois Masonic Medical Center.
Northbound No. 56 Milwaukee buses were temporarily rerouted in the area, according to a CTA alert. Southbound buses weren’t affected.
(JOLIET) An Iowa man died after his vehicle veered into oncoming traffic on Interstate 80 Monday afternoon in southwest suburban Joliet, police said.
About 4 p.m., the driver — identified by police as 31-year-old David Zenteno of Des Moines, Iowa — was traveling west on I-80 when his vehicle crossed into oncoming traffic in the eastbound lanes and struck two other vehicles near the Briggs Street exit, Illinois State Police said.
Zenteno’s vehicle flipped over in the collision and he was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
It was not known Monday night was caused Zenteno to cross the lanes, which were closed for three hours, police said.
(LINCOLNSHIRE) A 14-year-old girl was killed and seven other people were injured in a crash Sunday night on the Tri-State Tollway (I-94) near north suburban Lincolnshire, police said.
About 10:15 p.m., a white 2002 Ford Explorer was traveling eastbound on I-94 near the Half Day Road exit when the SUV blew a tire, lost control and struck the right guardrail, according to Illinois State Police Master Sgt. Jim Knipper.
Three of the SUV’s eight occupants, including the 14-year-old, were ejected from the vehicle, Knipper said.
The girl was then struck by a semi truck and was pronounced dead at the scene, Knipper said.
The seven other people were taken to hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries, Knipper said. The driver of the semi was not injured.
All eastbound lanes were closed to traffic in the area for more than three hours while state police investigated, but were reopened about 2:15 a.m. Monday. No citations have been issued in connection with the crash, Knipper said.
(WAUKEGAN) A north suburban teen, sentenced to periodic imprisonment for his role in a fatal street-racing crash, is back in custody after failing to appear for a court hearing and a weekend in jail, according to police.
Jeremy A. Betancourt, 19, of Antioch failed to show up in court April 29 for a probation revocation hearing, according to the Lake County sheriff’s office. A $250,000 failure to appear warrant was issued at the time.
Then on April 3 a $1 million escape warrant was issued after Betancourt failed to return to the Lake County Jail Work Release program to serve part of his periodic imprisonment, the sheriff’s office said.
Sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Marshals found and arrested him about 1:40 pm Thursday at a relative’s house in the 2600 block of West 36th Street in Chicago, according to police.
He was returned to the Lake County Jail and is scheduled to appear in bond court at 9 a.m. Friday.
In June 2014, Betancourt was sentenced to 30 months periodic imprisonment and four years intensive probation for his role in a crash that killed Antioch High student Cynthia Perez, who was 16 at the time.
He is to be held in the jail and only released for school and treatment.
He pleaded guilty to aggravated driving under the influence of marijuana resulting in death, and under a plea deal, charges of aggravated street racing and reckless homicide were dropped.
The crash happened June 24, 2013, on Route 120, just east of Hunt Club Road near Gages Lake, while Betancourt was street racing with another car. Perez, a passenger in Betancourt’s car, was ejected and died at the scene.
The other driver, Michael R. Dawson, then 19, of Antioch, pleaded guilty to aggravated street racing in 2013 and was sentenced to 30 months of intensive probation and 18 months of periodic imprisonment.
(CHICAGO) A north suburban animal shelter has filed a lawsuit against a bus company whose driver crashed a school bus through the front wall of the shelter in October 2013.
Wright-Way Rescue filed the suit Wednesday in Cook County Circuit Court against Alltown Bus Service Inc., and driver Janice O’Leary.
The crash happened just before 1 p.m. on Oct. 2, 2013. The bus was southbound on Harem Avenue making a left turn onto eastbound Touhy Avenue at the Niles-Chicago border when the driver told police she lost control, Niles police said at the time.
The bus jumped a curb on the north side of Touhy and crashed into Wright-Way. No one inside the building, human or animal, was injured. O’Leary was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, authorities said.
According to the lawsuit, O’Leary became distracted, fell off her seat and lost control of the bus.
After the crash, the building was deemed unfit for occupancy and the shelter, which saves animals from being euthanized at other facilities, was forced to move to a new location, the lawsuit claims.
“As a result of the crash, many of the animals that WWR had planned to rescue were instead euthanized at animal control facilities throughout the Midwest,” the suit states.
The three-count suit seeks at least $300,000 in damages.
“Since 2003, we have facilitated the adoption of thousands of animals on a yearly basis; more dogs than any other Illinois facility for the last four years in a row,” Christy Anderson, Wright-Way’s executive director and founder, said in a statement announcing the suit.
“When this bus crashed through our front door, it took our breath away. What took 10 years to build was destroyed in seconds,” Anderson said.
A representative for the Alltown Bus Service did not immediately respond to a call for comment Thursday afternoon.
(CRETE) A man died Sunday after a crash in south suburban Crete.
Mitchell Williams, 29, was injured in a motorcycle crash in the 400 block of Elms Court Lane in Crete, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.
Williams, of the 3600 block of Emerald in Steger, was taken to Franciscan St. James Health in Chicago Heights, where he was pronounced dead at 2:13 p.m. Sunday, according to the medical examiner’s office.
An autopsy performed Monday found that he died of multiple blunt force injuries in a motorcycle collision.
Crete police and the Will County sheriff’s office could not provide details of the crash Monday night.
(CHICAGO) A man was killed and two others were injured Wednesday morning in a three-vehicle crash on the Stevenson Expressway (I-55) in the South Side Bridgeport neighborhood, authorities said.
Two SUVs and a car collided about 5:45 a.m. in the inbound lanes of I-55 near Throop Street, according to Illinois State Police.
A man, whose exact age was not known, was taken to Mercy Hospital and Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, according to police and Fire Media Affairs spokesman Joe Roccasalva. The Cook County medical examiners’ office could not immediately confirm the fatality.
Another person injured in the crash was taken in serious-to-critical condition to Stroger Hospital, Roccasalva said. A third person was taken in fair-to-serious condition to Mercy Hospital.
Three northbound lanes of the expressway were closed to traffic, but were reopened by 8:20 a.m., according to police.
(CHICAGO) Two police officers and three others were injured in a rollover crash on the West Side early Friday.
The accident happened in the 3400 block of West Congress in the East Garfield Park neighborhood at 12:10 a.m., police said.
A police squad SUV was heading north on Homan when it was struck by a black car heading west on Congress, police said. The crash caused the SUV to flip onto its roof.
Two officers were taken to an unspecified hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, police said.
The 19-year-old woman driving the car and a woman riding passenger were taken to Stroger Hospital, police said. A man in the car was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital. All had non-life-threatening injuries, police said.
Alcohol is not suspected as a factor, police said. Citations are pending against the 19-year-old.
(BRIDGEVIEW) A man charged with DUI in connection with a southwest suburban crash that killed a 94-year-old woman has been ordered held on a $750,000 bond.
Patrick O’Connor, 29, is charged with aggravated DUI for the crash on Archer Avenue near 107th Street in unincorporated Lemont, according to a statement from the Cook County sheriff’s office.
O’Connor was driving a 2002 Mercury Sable westbound about 1:45 p.m. Friday when his vehicle crossed into eastbound traffic and struck a 2011 Subaru Outback, sheriff’s police said.
Brookfield resident Lillian Linduska, 94, was in the passenger seat of the Subaru, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office. She was taken to an area hospital where she later died.
Both O’Connor and the driver the Subaru, a 66-year-old Downers Grove woman, were treated for minor injuries, police said.
Authorities claim O’Connor had consumed alcohol and had been administered methadone earlier that day.
He was also cited for driving too fast for conditions, failure to reduce speed, DUI and crossing the median, police said.
O’Connor, of Justice, was ordered held on a $750,000 bond at a hearing Sunday, police said. He will next appear in court April 14 at the Bridgeview Courthouse.
(CHICAGO) A stolen car crashed through an iron fence and rolled over in the front lawn of a Bronzeville neighborhood home early Thursday on the South Side.
The car was travelling northbound in the 4100 block of South Cottage Grove Avenue about 12:15 a.m. when it lost control, hit an iron fence and flipped over, police News Affairs Officer Ronald Gaines said.
The car had previously been reported stolen, Gaines said. It was unoccupied when officers arrived at the scene.
No injuries were reported in the crash, Gaines said.
(PLAINFIELD) A Joliet man died after his vehicle fell into a ditch Sunday night in the southwest suburbs.
Steve R. McMullan, 34, was driving southbound on Interstate 55 when his vehicle left the roadway and struck multiple trees, the Will County coroner’s office said. The vehicle then came to a rest in a ditch off Frontage Road.
McMullan was pronounced dead at 8:30 p.m. at the scene of the crash, the coroner’s office said.
An autopsy performed Monday found McMullan died of injuries from the crash. A final cause of death was pending more studies, including a toxicology report.
Illinois State Police could not immediately comment on the crash.
Two people were seriously hurt when a car crashed on top of a frozen lagoon early Monday near Lincoln Park Zoo. / photo from Network Video Productions
(CHICAGO) A car carrying two people veered off Lake Shore Drive and crashed on top of a frozen pond near Lincoln Park Zoo early Monday.
The crash happened about 1:45 a.m. as a black sedan traveling south in the 2200 block of Lake Shore Drive left the road and rolled onto a pond that was frozen rock-solid, police said.
The mangled vehicle never submerged and rolled over several times before it finally rested on its roof. Bumpers and other car parts littered the frozen pond as rescue workers secured the vehicle and removed the two people trapped inside.
A female was taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Hospital and a male was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, police said. Both were in serious-to-critical condition, Chicago Fire Department spokesman Will Knight said.
The car crashed near a portion of Lake Shore Drive with no guard rail. A police official at the scene said the guard rail was likely missing due to a previous crash and never replaced.
Had the pond not been frozen, the car would have submerged at the deeper end of the pond, an official at the scene said.
The police Major Accidents Investigation Unit was called to the scene.