“It basically cut the car in half longways,” Kankakee Police Chief Larry Regnier said.
The car’s engine was ripped out in the crash. The Nissan broke into several pieces before coming to a stop in a ditch about 75 feet from the point of impact.
Regnier said the driver was thrown from the vehicle, and was killed. Two other passengers were found still belted into their seats, and were pronounced dead at the scene. A fourth person managed to crawl out of the car, and was taken to the hospital. The survivor was in stable condition after undergoing surgery Monday morning.
The victims’ names were not released Monday morning.
Kankakee police had to shut down U.S. 45-52 for a short time so emergency responders could do their jobs. Illinois State Police accident reconstruction teams also were brought in to try to determine exactly what went wrong. Sources said alcohol and speed were factors in the crash.