1 Driver Dead, 2 Seriously Injured In Fiery Three-Semi Crashby Jana Ritter - Published: 9/27/2017
A female FedEx driver was killed Tuesday in a fiery three-semi crash that occurred on I-80 near Joliet, Illinois. The two other drivers involved in the crash were taken to hospital with serious injuries, including one driver who is suffering severe burns after his truck burst into flames.
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The tragic accident happened at mile marker 129 on eastbound I-80 at about 6:10 am Tuesday morning. Sami S. Guzick, 50, of Joliet, was on a delivery job when the double trailer FedEx truck she was driving became disabled. She pulled to the shoulder of the road and called in for assistance. A second FedEx driver (a 49-year-old male from La Grange) was called to the scene to assist Guzick and he parked his semi behind her on the right shoulder.
According to police, Guzick got out of her truck to approach the second driver when a third semi-truck (belonging to West Side Transport of Cedar Rapids, Iowa) suddenly came along and veered onto the shoulder. The West Side truck then crashed into the rear of the first FedEx truck, then the second and then struck down Guzick before it exploded into flames. A passing motorist witnessed the horrific crash unfold and said it looked like a “bad dream.” Then he saw a truck driver on fire and immediately jumped into action.
"There's a dude on fire, man, I gotta get out and help," Beau Loomis recalls thinking at the time. He also happened to have a fire blanket in his vehicle. "I ran and there was a couple of guys standing there, and I threw the fire blanket at all of them. Tried to throw it on the guy. The guy was on the blanket and he was just mumbling. I don't think he knew anything, like, what was going on," Loomis says.
Emergency responders soon arrived at the crash site and sadly, Guzick was pronounced dead at the scene at 7:55 am. The two other drivers survived the crash but were transported to hospital with serious injuries. It was later confirmed that the West Side Transport driver (a 46-year-old male from Chicago) suffered severe burns from the flames and was transported to Loyola University Medical Center.
The eastbound lanes of the interstate were shut down for more than 10 hours while police investigated the crash and road crews cleared the wreckage. While investigators have not yet determined who is at fault for the fatal crash, FedEx has released the following statement:
"First and foremost we extend our deepest thoughts and concerns to the family and friends of those involved in this tragic incident. We are cooperating fully with investigating authorities at this time."