4-vehicle crash closes U.S. 20 in Pine Township for 2 hours
By Erin Guerra Post-Tribune correspondent September 4, 2012 2:38PM
Updated: September 4, 2012 9:16PM
Speed appears to have been a major factor in a series of crashes, at about 7:20 a.m. Tuesday, that closed all lanes of a portion of U.S. 20.
The closure, in Pine Township, lasted about two hours.
Three of the four drivers involved reported injuries and one — Eric Keiser, 29, of Demotte — was airlifted to Memorial Hospital of South Bend for severe head trauma.
An initial investigation showed Keiser was driving a 2007 Toyota that rear-ended an eastbound 1999 Pontiac driven by Robert Huffstodt, 55, of Valparaiso, who was waiting to turn into Palko Distributing, at 4991 E. U.S. 20. Police said after pushing the Pontiac off the road, the Toyota struck an eastbound tractor-trailer, driven by Leo Lewis, 31, of Michigan City. Keiser’s Toyota then went over the center line and was hit by a westbound 2009 Honda, driven by Ann Dyra, 49, of Lombard, Ill.
Keiser was transported to Franciscan St. Anthony Health in Michigan City before being transferred to South Bend. Dyra, the sole westbound driver involved, broke a collar bone and received internal injuries, police said. Lewis, the tractor-trailer driver, complained of back pain. Huffstodt was not injured.
Alcohol is not believed to have been a factor, police said, but witness reportedly said Keiser was driving at an excessive speed prior to the crash.