The southbound lanes of I-65 north of 61st Ave. in Lake County were closed
for more than four hours early this morning following a multiple vehicle
accident set in motion by a man later charged with operating while
intoxicated, the Indiana State Police said.
Franklin Sul, 22, of Hobart, was charged with OWI and driving while
suspended-prior, police said. He was also wanted on a warrant issued through
Hobart and charging him with battery.
According to police, at 1 a.m. Sul was southbound on I-65 when he rear-ended
a second vehicle. The driver of the second vehicle was not injured but Sul
lost control of his 2001 Infinity, hit the guard rail on the outer shoulder,
then returned to I-65 and came to rest facing east and straddling the right
and middle southbound lanes, police said.
At this point a third vehicle, a Honda, also southbound on I-65, stopped in
front of the Infinity and the driver exited to check on Sul, police said.
Meanwhile, a semi-tractor trailer hauling 23,000 pounds of general freight
jackknifed as its driver tried to go around the Infinity, causing the semi
to hit the Honda, leave the roadway, and come to rest partially in a ditch.
Police said that the Honda’s four occupants were treated at St. Mary Medical
Center and released. The trucker was not injured but his rig was a total
Sul, for his part, registered a blood alcohol content of .24 percent, police
said. He was treated for facial lacerations at St. Mary and then transported
to Lake County Jail.
“All southbound lanes were closed with traffic getting by on the inner
shoulder until approximately 3.57 a.m., when all lanes were closed for
removal of the semi,” police said. “All lanes were re-opened at 5:17 a.m.”