BROWN DEER -- Emergency crews feared the worst when they were called to a car versus semi crash late Thursday night, Oct. 24. The images from the wreck in Brown Deer are devastating -- and police say alcohol was a big factor in the accident.
According to police, the 48-year-old woman ran a red light traveling north on the Green Bay Road ramp to Brown Deer. Her vehicle collided with a semi-truck driven by a 48-year-old Illinois man.
The crash left quite a bit of damage in Brown Deer. Streetlights were replaced following the accident, but there are still signs of a pretty bad wreck. With the windshield smashed and the hood pinned under a semi, emergency crews worked for 20 minutes Thursday night rescuing the driver trapped in a red sedan.
"People think we have to remove the victim from the car, but it's actually removing the car from the victim," said Captain Dan Tyk, North Shore Fire-Rescue. "Anytime you hear car vs. semi crash -- especially late at night, where things are dark -- there are definitely factors involved that can throw the response into question."
Police say the big issue was alcohol. Investigators say the 48-year-old driver was arrested for OWI -- her fifth offense -- after running a red light at Green Bay Road and Brown Deer Road.
"We're very fortunate that even the driver of the vehicle didn't sustain serious injuries," said Tyk.
The driver of the semi, a 48-year-old man from Illinois, walked away from the wreck unharmed. Brown Deer police declined to comment on camera, and Tyk says it's unclear if speed was also a factor.
Hours later, as crews were out replacing the streetlights that toppled in the impact, the message was simple: Don't drink and drive.
"Make a choice that gets you home safely," said Tyk.
A fifth OWI is a felony. The driver has not yet been charged -- but emergency crews say she is expected to recover from her injuries.