Hero big rig driver dies in fiery crash ‘to avoid crashing into innocent people,’ sheriff says

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Authorities in Wisconsin say two men are dead following a gruesome collision that sent a big rig through an interstate barrier, causing it to explode into flames. The incident shut down Interstate 94 for about 10 hours on Wednesday.

Witnesses say the individual driving the big rig sacrificed his own life to prevent an even more deadly crash.

Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling said it was the “worst accident [he’s] ever been part of,” citing evidence that the driver acted to evade a worse fate by slamming into an existing multi-vehicle crash.

“I think this unfortunate, deceased individual is a hero in and of itself by turning down and risking his own life to avoid crashing into innocent people,” the sheriff said. “He turned off the roadway, rather than crashing into three other vehicles and a semi. I would suggest to you that that is very heroic — risking his own life in an effort to save potentially three other vehicles.”