Toll Road semi crash claims life of West Virginia man

HOWE, Ind. (ADAMS) – Indiana State Police with the Fort Wayne Post say that a West Virginia man was killed in a crash in LaGrange County Monday.

ISP officials say that at approximately 6:40 pm yesterday evening, troopers from the Indiana State Police Toll Road Post responded to a report of a semi crash on the I-90 Toll Road near the eastbound 126.5-mile marker, LaGrange County. Toll Road maintenance personnel were first on the scene, followed shortly by Trooper Matt Henson.

Upon arrival, Trooper Henson found a single semi-tractor with trailer in the side ditch along the right shoulder. The driver (sole occupant), Richard William Shields, 53, of Marion, West Virginia, was found to be unresponsive inside the cab. Trooper Henson broke out a window and climbed into the cab to attempt medical assistance. LaGrange County fire rescue and paramedics arrived on scene to continue the administration of CPR and applied an AED, however, all lifesaving measures proved unsuccessful. Mr. Shields was pronounced dead at the scene by the LaGrange County Coroner’s Office.

The preliminary crash investigation revealed that Shields 2019 Kenworth semi-tractor and trailer, had been traveling eastbound on I-90, when for an unknown reason ran off the roadway to the right, striking a guardrail and then coming to rest along the steep angle of the ditch. Road conditions were favorable at the time of the crash. It is suspected that Shields may have experienced a personal medical emergency while driving, leading to the loss of control and crash.

The LaGrange County Coroner’s Office has an autopsy scheduled for today at the Northeast Indiana Forensic Center in Fort Wayne.

All family notifications have been made.

This is an ongoing investigation. There is no further information to release at this time.

Troopers were assisted during this investigation by the LaGrange County Fire and Medic personnel, Toll Road Maintenance personnel, the LaGrange County Coroner’s Office, and Bill’s Towing service.