Updated, 1:52 p.m., Friday, Jan. 18, 2013
An Alsip man is being treated for critical injuries Friday, after he drove off the road, destroying his car and causing debris from the car to strike nearby properties, off of 135th Street, according to police.
The Orland Park Police Department was called around 3 a.m. about a single-vehicle crash on 135th Street near Partridge Lane, said Orland Park Police Commander John Keating. A 2003 Jaguar was driving west on 135th Street when it moved into the eastbound lane, before leaving the road near Partridge Lane, Keating said. The car struck several trees and landscaping, causing severe damage to the car and sending shrapnel toward nearby properties, before it came to rest in a retention ditch on the southwest corner of the intersection, Keating said.
The caller’s home was struck by debris from the vehicle, Keating said.
The car uprooted a tree that was between 16 and 18 inches in diameter, and the car's entire front end was split in half, Orland Fire Chief Ken Brucki said.
“The engine was completely extracted from the vehicle, and landed near a home in the area,” Keating said. “Investigators determined he was still in the vehicle, but he was partially ejected out of the passenger side door area.”
Only the driver was injured in the accident. No passengers were in the car at the time, Keating said. The driver was able to communicate verbally and was responding to pain, Brucki said.
Evacuating by helicopter was considered, given the initial difficulty of extricating the man from the damaged car, Brucki said. Firefighters were able to remove him in about 15 minutes, so the helicopter was canceled. Helicopters were seen hovering in the area, however those were news and traffic copters, Brucki said.
"It was a very challening extrication, because of how much he moved inside the vehicle," Brucki said. "Firefighters had to cut the roof off, and open and spread the passenger compartment to detangle him from the wreckage. They did an excellent job."
Peter Gonzales, 25, of the 11500 block of South Kolmar Avenue in Alsip, was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center with critical injuries. No update on his condition was available from the hospital around noon Friday.
“Based on the extent of vehicle damage and what was struck, it's amazing he wasn't injured more severely,” Keating said.
Gonzales was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, driving an uninsured vehicle, improper lane use, speeding over 40 mph above the posted limit and failure to wear a seat belt.
135th Street was closed for about six hours between 88th Avenue and 82nd Avenue/Partridge Lane.
Information about any prior arrests was not available Friday around noon.
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