Construction work and a freeway closure northbound on I-94 caused traffic exiting the freeway at Rawson Avenue to slow down last Monday. Shortly before midnight, a slowing tractor-trailer in the right lane of the expressway was rear-ended by another large truck, and in the ensuing chain reaction, a minivan got caught between the second truck and a third one.
The driver of the minivan, Kristaps Andzans, a 21-year-old man from Chicago, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to a JSOnline.com report. One of the truck drivers, aged 58, was also trapped in his vehicle, extricated and transported to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa for cuts and bruises, the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office said.
Another truck operator was also taken to Froedtert, suffering from shortness of breath, and was later released.
All northbound lanes near Oakwood Road in Oak Creek were closed because of the crash and reopened progressively between 6 a.m. and 6.30 a.m. on Tuesday.
The initial investigation did not indicate any involvement of alcohol, and all three truck drivers consented to a blood test for investigative purposes.
The attorneys of Hupy & Abraham send their most sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Andzans who died so tragically last week.
Pileups or chain reaction accidents cause terrible destruction, especially when several tractor-trailers are involved, as in this case. The rear-ending vehicle is, in most cases, charged with reckless driving because motor vehicles are supposed to keep a safe distance to allow them to stop if the vehicle in front stops. Of course, in a pileup crash, the stop is so sudden that successive crashes are almost unavoidable.