Three people were killed in crashes involving at least a dozen vehicles during thunderstorms along Interstate 30 in southwest Arkansas, state police spokesman Bill Sadler told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
The crashes all took place in the eastbound lanes near Friendship, Arkansas on Wednesday (June 8) afternoon, beginning with a two-vehicle collision that led to at least two other chain-reaction crashes, which Sadler confirmed were due to the severe weather in the area.
Arkansas State Police initially reported multiple fatalities as troopers continued to work on the scene Wednesday afternoon, shutting down all lanes of the busy Interstate 30, which links Arkansas’ biggest city, Little Rock, to Dallas, Texas. At the time, troopers didn’t suspect that all casualties had been accounted for.
“Troopers are going through every vehicle to search for any evidence of deceased that may still be trapped in the wreckage,” Sadler said via the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Police confirmed a vehicle caught fire at one of the crash sites after video shared online showed multiple large trucks burning at the scene.
Wednesday’s crash took place just two days a van failed to yield while crossing U.S. 65 and collided with a large truck, resulting in five deaths and five others being injured in southeast Arkansas.