ASHKUM, Ill. – An Illinois State Police trooper and bystander were hospitalized early Saturday morning after a suspected drunk driver struck the trooper’s SUV.
According to a state police spokesperson, the crash happened just before 2:35 a.m. on US Route 45 at 5152 S. Road in south Kankakee County.
The trooper had responded to investigate a prior crash and was outside his vehicle with the emergency lights activated. The driver of the crashed vehicle and the trooper were standing in front of the ISP vehicle.
Meanwhile, a green Chevrolet Trailblazer traveling southbound on US Route 45 failed to yield and struck the rear of the ISP car. The trooper and driver of the other crash were injured and had to be brought to a local hospital. Their injuries were not life-threatening.
The driver of the Trailblazer, 24-year-old Austin Gray, was uninjured. Gray was arrested at the scene and later charged with driving under the influence of aclohol, operating an uninsured motor vehicle, and a violation of Scott’s Law – improper passing of an emergency vehicle causing injury to another.
Scott’s Law is an Illinois law requiring all motorists to slow down and move over when approaching an emergency vehicle or any vehicle with their hazard lights activated. Anyone who violates Scott’s Law faces a fine of up to $10,000 for a first offense. If the violation results in injury to another person, the offending driver will lose their license for a period between six months and two years.
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