Semi-truck driver identified in crash that killed 4 on I-55 near - KMOV.com

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Semi-truck driver identified in crash that killed 4 on I-55 near Hamel

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20-year-old Hailey Bertels and 17-year-old sister Madisen Bertels were killed in the crash. (Credit: KMOV) 20-year-old Hailey Bertels and 17-year-old sister Madisen Bertels were killed in the crash. (Credit: KMOV)
Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at 12:40 p.m. Thursday at a St. Louis hospital from injuries sustained in the eight-vehicle crash Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at 12:40 p.m. Thursday at a St. Louis hospital from injuries sustained in the eight-vehicle crash

HAMEL, Ill. (KMOV.com) -- Illinois State Police have released the identity of the semi-truck driver that plowed into several vehicles on Interstate 55 near Hamel Nov. 21.

Mohamed Jama, 53, of Colorado was the driver behind the wheel. So far, he has not been charged or issued any tickets.

Four people died of injuries sustained during that multi-vehicle crash.

The crash happened around 6:15 p.m. Nov. 21 near mile marker 27 in Illinois when a semi-truck plowed through seven other vehicles, all traveling at highway speeds.

Read: School remembers 'amazing and loved' Staunton sisters killed in I-55 crash

"This is one of the worst accidents I've seen my entire life," said Geoffrey Schlechte, who was a member of the response team on scene. "This is terrible."

Hailey Bertels, 20 and her sister Madisen Bertels, 17, both from Staunton, were killed in the crash.

Two days after the crash, Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at a St. Louis area hospital from injuries sustained in the crash.

On Nov. 30, police said a fourth victim, Tori Carroll, 20, of Alhambra, Illinois, also died of her injuries.

The eight-vehicle accident shut down the highway into the night Nov. 21 as officials worked to uncover the cause of the crash. Stretches of the highway are under construction around the area of the accident, but the site of the crash was in a pocket without any work going on. 

"Where the actual crash happened there was a gap in between the construction," said Illinois State Trooper Calvin Dye Hr. "We're still investigating as to why the driver was unable to stop and why he struck those other seven vehicles."

Twelve people total were injured in the crash.

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