Thursday morning, just after 10:30 a.m., a two-vehicle crash on the Indiana Toll Road (I-90) claimed the life of a 7-year-old Illinois resident. Preliminary Investigation shows that before the crash, several vehicles were reportedly stopped partially in the right lane near the 12 mile-marker. This portion of interstate is a bridge consisting of three lanes without berms (shoulders). People were reportedly standing outside of their vehicles attempting to capture a stray dog that had run onto the interstate. A Chevrolet Volt, driven by 38 year old Anthony M. Swanson, from Chicago, IL, was eastbound in the center lane approaching the location when the Chevrolet reduced its speed. As it did so, a semi-truck/trailer was also traveling eastbound in the center lane behind the Chevrolet. The truck was being driven by 51 year old Javier A. Ayala, from Cleveland, OH.
The truck rear ended the Chevrolet at a high rate of speed. This impact caused catastrophic damage to the Chevrolet, ejecting the rear passenger from the vehicle. The driver and female passenger sustained serious, but non-life-threatening injuries. They were both transported to Northlake Hospital in Gary for treatment. The driver of the semi was not injured.
The deceased has been identified as 7 year old Thatcher Swanson, from Chicago, IL.
The Indiana Toll Road eastbound lanes were closed at this location for approximately 6 hours.