ST. ELMO, Ill. (WCIA) – An Illinois State Trooper is recovering after their squad car was hit by a semi-trailer truck early Sunday morning on Interstate 70 in Fayette County.
The trooper, whose identity was not released by the Illinois State Police, was assisting another driver on the shoulder when the truck veered off the road and hit the trooper’s parked car. The trooper was sitting inside the car when it was hit.
The trooper, as well as the driver and passenger of the truck, were taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The trooper has since been released while the occupants of the truck remain hospitalized.
The driver of the truck, 58-year-old Pedro Espinoza of Sunland, Calif. was charged with violating Scott’s Law, failing to slow down to avoid an accident and improper lane usage. He faces suspension of his driver’s license for anywhere between six and 24 months.
This is the 19th time this year that an ISP squad car has been hit in relation to Scott’s Law, otherwise known as the “Move Over” law. 12 ISP troopers have been injured in these crashes.
Lieutenant Kerry Sutton, commander of ISP District 12, spoke of the need for drivers to slow down and move over for vehicles stopped on the side of the road with their emergency or hazard lights activated.
“I’m very proud of District 12 Troopers and all ISP Troopers working throughout the state risking their lives to keep our roadways safe,” Sutton said in a media release. “These crashes are completely preventable, and I am asking the public to avoid putting the lives of others at risk by making responsible choices when behind the wheel; always move over when you approach a stationary vehicle on the side of the road.”