Six dead in Florida highway fire after accident, pile-up near Gainesville | News Coverage from USA

Six dead in Florida highway fire after accident, pile-up near Gainesville

An inferno on a Florida highway killed at least six people and injured eight others Thursday afternoon after tractor-trailer rigs and cars tangled together to create a chaotic accident scene.

The accident and fire happened on Interstate 75 about a mile south of Alachua, near Gainesville, the Florida Highway Patrol reported. It’s unclear what caused the accident, but authorities said at least two tractor-trailers were involved and about 50 gallons of diesel fuel spilled on the highway and ignited.

State police troopers said a passenger van and a midsize sedan were also involved in the 3:40 p.m. crash, News4Jax reported. There is a significant amount of damage to the road, which police said will be closed for several more hours. Drivers were asked to avoid the area.

The Alachua County Sherriff’s office tweeted that the crash was in the northbound lanes but that the southbound lanes were closed to keep a route open for first responders, saying it “required all hands on deck” and warning “the closure is going to be lengthy.”

Eight others were taken to the hospital, some with critical injuries, the Gainesville Sun reported.

A helicopter landed on scene to search for any victims who may have fled into nearby woods when the fire raged on the highway. 

Authorities extinguished the fire, but the aftermath caused a portion of the interstate to be closed in both directions, causing massive delays Thursday evening.

Authorities said they are treating it as a pending homicide investigation.

CONTRIBUTING: Associated Press

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *