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Authorities seek help to ID vehicle that may have been involved in deadly ammonia leak accident

Cars at intersection
Illinois State Police
Officials are seeking help to identify the driver of the dark colored vehicle shown in surveillance video.

UPDATE: The driver of the vehicle has been identified as of Thursday, according to Illinois State Police.

The accident near Teutopolis Friday left five people dead and multiple injuries.

Authorities responded to the crash that occurred at 8:42 p.m. on 19740 East U.S. Highway 40. The crash involved a semi-truck tanker carrying anhydrous ammonia that was punctured and leaked.

According to Illinois State Police, the initial investigation shows at approximately 8:35 p.m., a dark colored vehicle (unknown make/model) was traveling westbound through the intersection of U.S. Highway 40 and Spring Creek Road in Montrose, Illinois.

The investigation determined the vehicle continued traveling Westbound through Teutopolis on U.S. Highway 40 and would have passed the semi-truck tanker.

Authorities have not indicated if the driver of the vehicle could face charges.

Officials said the tanker truck jackknifed and crashed into a utility trailer parked just off the road. The tank carrying anhydrous ammonia hit the trailer hitch of the other vehicle, which punctured the chemical container. Roughly half the truck's 7,500 gallon load was spilled.

All five of the fatalities were likely due to exposure to the chemical, according the Effingham County Coroner's initial investigation.

Those who died were identified as:

Kenneth Bryan, 34, from Teutopolis, Ill.
Rosie Bryan, 7, from Beecher City, Ill.
Walker Bryan, 10, from Beecher City, Ill.
Danny J. Smith, 67, from New Haven, Mo.
Vasile Cricovan, 31, from Twinsburg, Ohio

Five were also airlifted from the scene and remain hospitalized.

Authorities have been retrieving surveillance video that could provide more information into this incident. If you have doorbell or security cameras that may have captured video of this suspect vehicle before or after the incident, or any information, you are asked to contact Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation Zone 8 Investigations at 217-342-7881.

Video of the vehicle passing through the intersection can be found here https://youtu.be/b4l68efYq7A.


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