Detroit – A 62-year-old Detroit police officer — a 32-year veteran of the department — was injured Tuesday morning in a single-vehicle crash in his scout car on southbound Interstate 75 in southwest Detroit.
The crash took place about 6:50 a.m., after the officer slid on ice and hit the median wall near Vernor, said Officer Dan Donakowski, a Detroit Police Department spokesman.
The first person to make contact with the officer, after the crash, was an off-duty supervisor at the Detroit Fire Department, who was on his way to work, officials said.
In remarks outside of Detroit Receiving Hospital, captured on the Detroit Police Department's Facebook page, Police Chief James Craig credited the supervisor for his "presence of mind" in responding when he saw the officer slumped over, and gave an update on the officer's condition.
"He recognized me right away," Craig said "so that's a good sign. He's obviously pretty banged up. His family has been notified and they are en route."
The Detroit Fire Department responded to the crash and had to use the Jaws of Life to pull the officer from his vehicle, said Dave Fornell, deputy commissioner of the department.
Medics transported the officer to Receiving Hospital, where he is in temporary serious condition. Head trauma is a possibility.
At a ceremonial swearing-in ceremony Tuesday at Detroit City Hall, Mayor Mike Duggan relayed word from Chief Craig that the injured officer is "conscious and talking to him," and added that "he's not out of the woods and needs prayers."
The officer's scout car took "quite a bit of damage," Donakowski said.
Metro Detroiters can expect to see roads and sidewalks with slippery spots because ice that melted yesterday froze again overnight, according to National Weather Service meteorologists in White Lake Township. They also said elevated surfaces, such as the pavement on bridges, can be slick.
Some Metro Detroit Police Departments, such as the Trenton Police Department, warned motorists and pedestrians Tuesday morning to exercise caution when driving and walking.
The Michigan Department of Transportation reported several car accidents on area freeways, including I-75, I-94 and I-96 Tuesday morning.
Redford Township Police said its officers were dealing with multiple traffic accidents, including one involving a police car struck by a vehicle and another involving a school bus.
Christine Ferretti contributed to this report.