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Published: Friday, 5/14/2004

Toledo truck driver killed in I-94 crash

CHELSEA, Mich. - A Toledo man was killed Wednesday morning in a two-vehicle collision near Chelsea, Mich., in Washtenaw County.

Daniel Ellis, Jr., 37, was eastbound in a tractor-trailer on I-94 just west of Notten Road at 10 a.m. when he collided with the rear of another tractor-trailer driven by Harold Peake, Michigan State Police troopers said. Traffic had been stopped for a construction zone about two miles ahead.

The cab of Mr. Ellis' truck was crushed by the impact. Although Mr. Ellis initially was able to talk with his rescuers, it took emergency workers nearly 90 minutes to remove him from the wreckage.

He was pronounced dead at the scene, troopers said.

Mr. Peake was treated at Chelsea Community Hospital.

Another driver, Tim Waxler of Jackson, Mich., narrowly escaped injury when he drove his pickup into a ditch after he saw Mr. Ellis's truck heading for his vehicle.

Mr. Ellis' truck clipped the rear of Mr. Waxler's pickup before colliding with the Peake vehicle, troopers said. Mr. Waxler was not injured.

"If he wouldn't have looked in his rear-view mirror and saw it coming, he wouldn't be alive today," Trooper Scott Singleton said.

I-94 was closed for six hours as a result of the accident.

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