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At least five dead in fatal chain-reaction crash on Missouri highway triggered by fog

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Dense fog led to a massive pileup in Interstate 57, southeastern Missouri, on Thursday, March 17. AOL obtained a description of the hazardous conditions from AccuWeather meteorologist Randy Adkins.

“Locally dense fog was present along that stretch of I-57 from roughly 4 A.M. to 9 A.M. based on nearby observations and satellite imagery,” revealed Adkins. “The denseness of the fog and the short distances over which visibility would be rapidly reduced would make for particularly hazardous driving conditions.”

Fog is considered a severe traffic hazard, yet one that many people overlook. The Weather Channel previously released a report on fog-related accidents. The annual averages were a staggering 31,385 crashes with 11,812 injuries and 511 deaths.

Sikeston, Missouri, reported visibility to be nearly zero when the crash occurred around 8 A.M. near the city of Charleston. Authorities believe someone braked in the rush hour traffic, which set off a fatal chain reaction. A total of 47 vehicles, including several tractor-trailers, were involved in the accident, and at least five people died at the scene. There are multiple injuries, with one person being airlifted to a local hospital. Some emergency responders were also taken to hospitals for medical attention.

It was only when the fog cleared that observers could assess the full scope of the damage. “I’ve never seen a crash like this,” Sgt. Jeff Kinder said in an interview with CNN affiliate KFVS-TV. “The expanse of the crash, it took up about a half-mile of the interstate.”

Drone footage captured by news crews shows what is left of the vehicles involved, including twisted and jagged chunks of metal that used to be cars and tractor-trailers. The cargo was strewn all over the highway. The Interstate was closed in both directions for approximately 25 miles for most of the day. The area of closure was from Sikeston to the Missouri-Illinois border.

The 8-hour closure allowed time for a crash scene investigation and cleanup of the items spilled from the trailers. TheMissouri Department of Public Safety sent out a Tweet about the accident and closure of I-57. It advised drivers to find an alternate route and provided a link for road information and a map showing the crash site and its proximity to other routes.

According to Mississippi County Coroner Terry Parker, there are no more fatalities, and the victims’ names have not been released. “We’re going through the identification process and then notification of families,” Parker said. “The recovery stage is over.”

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DN News Desk is the editorial wing of Digital Nod, an award-winning digital PR & marketing agency. Committed to delivering timely and insightful news coverage of global events, DN News Desk's team of seasoned journalists and editors ensures that readers are well-informed about the latest developments across various domains. With a finger on the pulse of current affairs, DN News Desk strives to provide accurate, balanced, and thought-provoking articles that shed light on the ever-evolving global landscape. From breaking news to in-depth features, DN News Desk's contributions aim to empower readers with knowledge and perspectives that matter.
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