‘Multiple fatalities’ reported as runaway truck collides into stalled cars on I-70 near Denver
LAKEWOOD, Colo. (AP) —
UPDATE: Colorado officials say four people have died after a semi-truck hauling lumber plowed into vehicles on Interstate 70. Authorities had to wait until daylight Friday to confirm the death toll from Thursday’s 28-vehicle pileup because of the devastation caused by the fire.
Lakewood police spokesman Ty Countryman says the driver of the truck who caused the crash sustained minor injuries. He has been arrested on suspicion of vehicular homicide.
Officials say the driver was headed down a hill when he slammed into slower traffic. Countryman says there is no indication the crash was intentional.
A crash on Interstate 70 near the western edge of Denver killed “multiple” people and started a massive blaze on on Thursday afternoon. Police say the multi-car pileup happened when a semitruck collided into a group of cars that were stopped in traffic.
The crash took place around 4:50 p.m. local time and involved at least 24 cars and four semis, according to Ty Countryman of the Lakewood Police Department, in an update on the crash Friday morning. While the exact number of fatalities is still unknown, six people were taken to the hospital, including the driver of the semi, who sustained minor injuries. The semi driver is now in police custody and is being charged with multiple counts of vehicular homicide, Countryman said.
According to police and fire department officials, the semi that started the crash was hauling lumber, which scattered onto the roadway and mixed with large amounts of diesel fuel. The resulting blaze melted aluminum and burned as hot as 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Josh Laipply, chief engineer at the Colorado Department of Transportation.