UPDATE: Rantoul woman dies in crash on U.S. 45 north of Urbana

UPDATE: Rantoul woman dies in crash on U.S. 45 north of Urbana

URBANA — A Rantoul woman was killed in a crash early Thursday on U.S. 45 just north of Urbana.

Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said Shana Outlaw, 23, was pronounced dead at 6:40 a.m. at Carle Foundation Hospital, a victim of multiple traumatic injuries.

No autopsy will be performed, Northrup said.

Illinois State Police Master Sgt. Mark Holley said Ms. Outlaw was headed south in the right lane of U.S. 45 just south of Leverett Road when her car developed a mechanical problem and she stopped and got out. About 5:50 a.m., a pickup truck driven by a 30-year-old man from East Lynn whose name was not released struck her car.

The impact threw her car into the right ditch, police said. The man’s truck came to a rest on its top in the left lane.

Ms. Outlaw was found in the ditch after the collision, but Holley said it’s unclear if she was hit by the man’s truck or by her own car after the man’s truck hit it.

Ms. Outlaw’s three children, ages eight months, 4 and 6, were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, Holley said.

The driver of the pickup was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

The crash caused the southbound lanes of U.s. 45 to be closed until about 11 a.m. while troopers investigated.

Shortly after 11 a.m., several Urbana officers and Champaign County sheriff's deputies responded to Carle's emergency room, where there was a report of a disturbance.

Urbana Sgt. Andy Hewkin said several members of Ms. Outlaw's family and friends were having an emotional reaction to the news of her death. Police quickly defused the situation and no one was hurt or arrested.

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UPDATE, 10:55 a.m.:

The scene has been cleared and all lanes are open.

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UPDATE, 8:55 a.m.:

Illinois State Police say that southbound lanes of U.S. 45 will remain shut down for about two more hours after a crash earlier Thursday.

Police said the accident happened just south of Leverett Road, which is north of Urbana. The Illinois Department of Transportation remains on the scene diverting traffic onto Leverett Road.

More details about the crash are not yet available. Use caution as you approach the area.

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Original story, published 6 a.m. Thursday:

Illinois State Police remain on the scene of a crash on U.S. 45 that has shut down both southbound lanes.

Police said the accident happened just south of Leverett Road, which is north of Urbana. Traffic is being diverted onto Leverett Road for now.

Northbound traffic is moving slowly. Use caution as you approach the area.

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