MADISON COUNTY — A fiery crash on Interstate 255 near Edwardsville Monday night claimed the life of a 24-year-old Carlyle man.
According to the Belleville News-Democrat, an Illinois State trooper used to patrol car as a wedge between the burning Ford Ranger driven by Max Davis, of Carlyle, and the Cadillac STS, driven by a former Patoka man, 61-year-old Ralph Bishop, of Pocahontas.
The Davis and Bishop vehicles reportedly collided head-on around 10:21 p.m. Monday. Witnesses arriving on the scene reported the Ford Ranger was fully engulfed in flames.
As police arrived on the scene, they found the front end of the Ford Ranger was jammed against the driver’s side door of the Cadillac, and the intense heat was beginning to melt the door.
Trooper Joshua Korando backed his patrol car up to the Cadillac and used it like a wedge, shoving the Cadillac away from the Ford Ranger. That allowed emergency workers to rescue Bishop.
Davis was declared dead at the scene. The Madison County Coroner’s Office reports there was no way to tell if Davis had been wearing a seat belt or if airbags had been deployed. The autopsy showed that Davis suffered blunt trauma to the head, chest and abdomen. Davis was identified with dental records, according to the coroner’s office.
Bishop was flown to a St. Louis-area hospital, and his condition was not immediately available.
The crash is under investigation by the Illinois State Police. Funeral arrangements for Davis are pending at the Zieren Funeral Home in Carlyle.