An early-spring weather mix of snow and ice along with high-speed, distracted drivers caused an early morning 50-car pile-up that shut down the Kennedy Expressway for five hours on Wednesday, April 15. Illinois State Police reports said the crash sent 14 people to the hospital and left another 45 on-scene for medical evaluations. A dozen ambulances responded to the scene.
“Overnight conditions deteriorated. We got some snow. Some icy conditions on the expressway. Vehicles driving at high rates of speed caused the accident,” said Deputy District Fire Chief John Giordano. “It caused an effect where vehicles couldn’t stop behind them because of the high speeds they were traveling, and thus the amount of vehicles we have at this time.”
When road conditions become hazardous, drivers who operate too fast for conditions and while distracted are especially dangerous to everyone they share the road with. The wreck has since been noted as one of the most significant pile-ups experienced on inbound Kennedy at North and involved 46 vehicles, including three tractor-trailers and semi-trucks.