At least five people are dead and dozens more injured after a 100 car pile-up on a Texas freeway on Thursday morning that was caused by Winter Storm Shirley, a brutal storm that is wreaking havoc across multiple southern states.
Firefighters are still going car to car along Interstate 35 near Fort Worth, trying to find people who urgently need to be rescued after the crash at 6.30am on Thursday morning.
It’s unclear what started it but video shows a FedEx truck losing control on a downhill stretch of the freeway and plowing into a barrier. Cars behind it then started smashing into it.
The crash site stretches for 1.5 miles along the freeway and traffic is backed up for miles. Authorities are describing it as a ‘mass casualty incident’. It includes cars stuck beneath 18-wheelers and pick-up trucks.
According to MedStar, an ambulance service on the ground, the number of people in critical condition is currently between 40 and 50 but is growing ‘by the minute’.
By 1pm, 36 people had been taken to the hospital. Firefighters are now worried that the people who are trapped my develop hypothermia in the 27 F cold.
It is the worst of multiple crashes across Texas that have been caused by the storm. Another person died in a crash in Dallas and two others were killed in other incidents over Wednesday night and Thursday morning.
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The crash site after the pile-up on Thursday morning. As many as 100 cars were involved and dozens of people are injured
Dozens of cars were struck in the crash on Thursday morning. The roads were unusually icy
Emergency services used cranes to remove some of the cars from one another. Many were trapped in their vehicles
A huge truck that was flipped almost onto its side in the pile up. It pressed other, smaller vehicles up against the freeway barrier
Many of the vehicles involved were large trucks which crushed the smaller vehicles beneath them
A huge Coca Cola trucker mixed among smaller vehicles in the pile up. The smaller cars were obliterated
18-wheelers landed on top of smaller vehicles. There are many vehicles still on the road
The pile-up was one of many across the state of Texas on Thursday morning but it was by far the worst
‘Multiple vehicles involved. Multiple people trapped. More details to follow,’ the Fort Worth fire department said in a tweet at around 8am.
They shared a photo of firefighters trying to gain access to people trapped inside a cargo truck which had smashed into another vehicle. Firefighters are having difficulty accessing the vehicles because the road is still so icy.
On Thursday morning, cop Daniel Segura told CNN: ‘We can confirm multiple vehicles involved and at least three fatalities.
‘We have officers on scene and is still an active scene. Weather was probably a factor.’
Vehicles are piled up after a fatal crash on Interstate 35 near Fort Worth, Texas on Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021. The massive crash involving 75 to 100 vehicles on an icy Texas interstate killed at least five
Firefighters are still going car to car looking for people to rescue. The crash site is 1.5miles long and between 40 and 50 people are critically injured
A FedEx truck was filmed losing control on a downhill stretch of the road in the early hours of the morning and crashing through the barrier. Cars behind it then started piling up
Part of the pile up is shown, above right, at 10.44am on Thursday morning as firefighters continued to work at the scene
Traffic is backed up for miles behind the crash site as a result of the accident
‘This is one of the [worst] disasters I have ever seen in this area,’ North Texas storm chaser Jason McLaughlin said in a video from the scene.
Overnight, Winter Storm Shirley – which is expected to wreak havoc on multiple states over the next few days – dumped sleet and froze roads across southern states, including Texas.
In another incident, 26 cars crashed into each other in Austin. It’s unclear if anyone died in that incident.
More than 1,200 flights across states have been canceled as a result of the storm.
It brought snow and ice to Texas, Arkansas and Tennessee, causing multiple road accidents.
There were 20 weather-related crashes in Louisville, Kentucky, frozen bridges in Memphis and freezing rain and snow in Indiana.
The fire department tweeted it on Thursday while firefighters went from car to car trying to rescue people trapped inside
In a different accident in Richardson, Texas, firefighters had to close the freeway. In total, eight people have died in multiple incidents across the state because of the weather