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6 semis, 375 vehicles trapped in S. Illinois snow

  • Associated Press
  • January 6, 2014 - 6:05 PM

EFFINGHAM, Ill. — A state emergency management official says "the worst possible combination of circumstances" caused six semis and about 375 vehicles to get stuck along a snowy stretch of interstate in southern Illinois.

Jonathon Monken is director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. He says a few semis jackknifed near the intersections of interstates 57 and 70 in Effingham Sunday night, setting off a nasty chain reaction.

Snow drifts as high as 8 feet piled up against the semis, preventing cars from getting through. Those cars then became covered by snow drifts.

Monken says a special 10-ton National Guard vehicle called a "wrecker" had to be used to move the semis.

He says it took more than 100 emergency personnel about six hours to clear the area. No one was injured.

© 2014 Star Tribune