A fatal traffic crash occurred Tuesday night on Interstate 70, about a mile west of the Pocahontas exit.
The first call about the accident was received by the Greenville 911 center at 7:56 p.m. It was reported a semi truck and Dodge Caravan collided head-on.
Bond County Coroner Anthony Brooks pronounced the Caravan driver dead at the scene. He identified the victim as 48-year-old Francis L. Thayer of Highland. The coroner said Thayer was employed at the Greenville Federal Correctional Institution.
Brooks said he learned that Thayer got onto the interstate, allegedly driving west in the eastbound lanes, at the 41 mile-marker, which is at the Millersburg Road. He told WGEL that the Bond County Sheriff’s Department and Illinois State Police received multiple calls, before the crash, of a wrong-way driver on the interstate.
After the crash, the eastbound tank truck came to rest on its wheels in the interstate median. The wrecked SUV came to rest on the south side of the eastbound lanes.
The crash is being investigated by District 11 state police. Coroner Brooks said the truck driver was not taken to a hospital.
Pocahontas-Old Ripley Fire Protection District firefighters and emergency medical service personnel were sent to the scene. Bond County deputies responded for traffic control. Pocahontas-Old Ripley Fire District personnel also assisted with traffic.
At one time all four lanes of Interstate 70 were shut down. By 9 p.m., the westbound lanes were open.
The eastbound lanes were closed for several hours.