Truck Collides With Seven Vehicles On I-55 Leading To Three Fatalities

There was a fatal accident Tuesday night (November 21, 2017) on Interstate 55 (I-55) south of Hamel.  The crash involved eight vehicles, with two people being killed in the crash and twelve people injured.  A third person later died from accident injuries.  The accident happened after a truck failed to slow down for traffic that had slowed due to construction that was happening south of the accident scene.  That truck then collided with the other vehicles.

According to information provided by the Illinois State Police (ISP), the accident occurred at approximately 6:15 p.m., in the southbound lanes of I-55 at the 27.5 mile post.

An excerpt regarding the crash, from the article (with remembrances) of November 23, 2017, titled “Sisters from Staunton killed in I-55 crash when trucker plows into traffic“:

Several witnesses told investigators a southbound semi truck traveling an estimated 60 mph had struck seven vehicles, running over some of them, Trooper Calvin Dye said. Several patients had to be rescued from their vehicles after the crash.

Dye, the trooper, said he didn’t know specifics about which car was hit first. He said they were all heading the same direction. None of the vehicles was stopped or slowed in traffic before being struck, Dye said.

“This was probably the worst crash a lot of us on the scene have ever been on,” Dye said. “The number of cars. Everywhere you turned and looked, there was another smashed-in, totaled vehicle.”

The sisters that were killed in the crash were identified as Madisen N. Bertels, 17, and her sister Hailey Joann Bertels, 20, of Staunton. They were traveling in a 2010 Kia Forte at the time of the crash.

In addition to these fatalities, twelve people were also injured, with two of those injured being critically injured.  One of those injured, identified as Vivian Vu, age 19, of Joplin, Missouri, died on Thursday.

The truck driver, identified as a 53-year-old man, survived the crash.

Additional details and possible updates concerning this fatal crash can be seen in a variety of media sources, including the article mentioned above as well as the November 22 article (with video) titled “Staunton IL sisters killed in fatal car crash near Hamel IL” as well as the November 24 The Telegraph article titled “Separate I-55 accidents claim four lives; one in critical condition.”


Should you or someone you care for experience injury or other harm in Illinois, please contact the Elman Joseph Law Group for a free consultation to discuss the legal situation and to determine the potential of a personal injury lawsuit.

Elman Joseph Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer.  Over the last 25+ years Elman Joseph Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.

During this 25+ year period, Elman Joseph Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.  In fact, because of these court trial accomplishments, many well-known law firms choose to have Elman Joseph Law Group take cases to court.

To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Joseph Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time.  This legal consultation is free.

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Elman Joseph Law Group, LLC ( is an Illinois personal injury law firm that concentrates in Illinois personal injury and wrongful death cases involving vehicle accidents (car, motorcycle, bike, bus, pedestrian, truck, etc.)

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