The La Porte County Sheriff’s Office has released information on a fatal crash that occurred along U.S. 20 Tuesday morning.
At 11:57 AM, deputies were called to US 20 and Wilhelm Road in reference to a head-on crash. Deputies arrived at the scene at 12:02 PM and determined one of the involved drivers was deceased. The investigation determined a 1999 Ford Crown Victoria, being driven by 22-year-old Chance M. Van Dyne of Omaha, Nebraska, was traveling eastbound on U.S. 20. The vehicle began to slide on the snow-covered roadway, left the eastbound lanes of U.S. 20 and drove left of center.
A 1996 Freightliner, being driven by 54-year-old Richard L. Snell of Portage, was traveling westbound on U.S. 20. Snell observed the passenger vehicle sliding and he began to merge from the westbound U.S. 20 passing lane to the driving lane to avoid a crash. The passenger vehicle collided with the trailer being pulled by Snell’s tractor.
Following the initial impact, a 2015 Peterbilt, being driven by 34-year-old Jose L. Fernandez of Bartlett, Illinois, was also traveling westbound on US 20 in the passing lane. Fernandez observed the crash in front of him and the passenger vehicle spinning into the passing lane. Fernandez was unable to avoid a crash and struck the driver’s side of the passenger vehicle.
Van Dyne was pronounced dead at the scene. Snell and Fernandez were uninjured.
Toxicology test results are pending.