Driver and Four Children Injured in Toll Road Crash
By: Sheila McCrea - Friday, March 5, 2021

ORLAND, IN - Four children and their father are in the hospital after a minivan ran off the road and rolled on the Indiana Toll Road Thursday.

According to the Indiana State Police, at around 2 p.m., troopers responded to a single-vehicle crash on the Indiana Toll Road near the westbound 135 mile marker. Responding troopers found a minivan that had crashed with heavy damage in the center median. The driver and his four children, ages ranging from 2-9-years-old, had injuries varying from minor to severe.

Reports indicate two of the children were flown from the scene to a Fort Wayne area hospital. The father and two other children were transported by ambulance to the same hospital.

A preliminary investigation revealed that Luke Christopher Peterson, age 43 of Cleveland, Ohio, was driving westbound on the Toll Road at a high rate of speed prior to losing control. The minivan reportedly ran off road into the center median and rolled several times prior to coming to rest.

Witnesses reported seeing the minivan recklessly driving at a high rate of speed, swerving in and out of traffic prior to the crash. Authorities say other witnesses stated that the minivan swerved to avoid rear-ending a semi before running off the road into the median.

It is unknown if seat belts were used because the driver and all four children were out of the vehicle when he arrived. There were no child safety seats or booster seats found in the vehicle, but airbags deployed.

Traffic on the Toll Road was temporarily shut down in both directions for nearly two hours while troopers and first responders managed the scene.

Both excessive speed and alcohol are suspected as contributing factors. The crash remains an active and ongoing investigation.


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