The I-10 crashes on Tuesday killed three and sent a dozen others to area hospitals. A dust storm blew in knocking the visibility down to almost zero, which is a recipe for disaster on this stretch of highway. This stretch of I-10 has seen its share of deadly crashes in the past, according to Yahoo News on Oct. 30.
The 19-vehicle pileup on I-10 was a maze of twisted metal on a stretch of highway between Phoenix and Tucson where the dust cloud blew in and created fatal havoc. Crews assembled portable lighting in the area after sunset to work into the night trying to pry apart the cars and trucks involved in this crash.
Authorities’ report that the vehicles involved in the accident included 10 commercial vehicles, seven passenger cars, one tanker and one recreational vehicle. Footage of the crash area shown on TV offered a picture of the tragedy with vehicles twisted together due to the force of the many crashes in this chain reaction accident. One car is seen pinned between two 18-wheelers and other cars are seen pinned under big rigs.
One motorist who was in the crash said he had gotten out of his car just in time. He couldn’t see anything but he could hear the “boom, boom, boom, boom,” coming closer to his vehicle, which made him walk away from the shoulder and a safe distance from the road. The cars started a chain reaction, pushing a truck right into his car.
The Arizona Department of Transportation gives tips for motorists caught in a dust storm, which is unlike any other type of weather event. They say to pull as far off the road as possible and turn off your lights. Keep your foot of the brake so your brake lights aren’t illuminated. If your brake lights or car lights are on, this may have other cars follow the lights thinking that this is the way traffic is headed. Stay put until it clears up, suggests the experts.
The investigators today are talking to all the people involved as they are trying to determine how many separate crashes occurred during this tragic event. Authorities today believe this chain reaction accident might actually be as many as four or five separate accidents. This is one of the worst accidents on I-10 in the last seven years, reports a DPS spokesperson.