Pennsylvania State Police release official death toll for I-81 crash

Pennsylvania State Police release official death toll for I-81 crash

Pennsylvania State Police released official numbers for Monday’s massive, deadly pileup on Interstate 81 near Minersville, Pennsylvania, in Schuylkill County.The huge crash transformed a stretch of I-81 between the Tremont/Tower City exit and Highridge Park Road into a chaotic, smoking scene. Initially, rescuers were unable to search through all of the wreckage because of the number of vehicles on fire. The crash happened at 10:30 a.m. Monday.On Wednesday, Pennsylvania State Police released the following figures:Six people killed.Twenty-four people injured.80 vehicles involved.Of those vehicles, 39 were commercial, 41 were passenger.One portion of I-81 was closed for 40 hours.Police have not released the names of any of the victims. Some of the bodies were badly burned.Harrowing video captures crash as it happenedMike Moye was involved in the I-81 crash. He got out of his car and started shooting video along the snow-covered interstate. Moye’s first-person account showed burning tractor-trailers, a person almost getting hit, an out-of-control tow truck and more. Please note there is profanity and some may find the video disturbing. You can watch it below:’I was hearing loud bangs, explosions’Pennsylvania State Police said the huge crash was caused by a snow squall. One woman caught up in it spoke to a local news crew about the terrifying experience.”The snow came out of nowhere. I was just driving back and then could see only one car in front of me and then it went fully white, I couldn’t even see three feet in front of me,” Lillie Weaver said. “I was hearing loud bangs, explosions and then I saw the smoke. That was the one thing I could see was black smoke from the tractor-trailer.”Aerial video shows scale of devastationSeveral aerial videos demonstrated just how big the Schuylkill County crash was.On the day of the crash, a drone flew above the still-smoking scene. See that video below.One day later, additional aerial video was released showing a tangled mass of wrecked tractor-trailers still sitting in the northbound lanes of I-81. At the time that video was captured, crews were about halfway done with cleanup. See that video below.Difficulties reopening I-81I-81 fully reopened around 1 a.m. Wednesday, more than 40 hours after the crash happened.After towing the vehicles away, crews had to mill the roadway.The top layer of asphalt had to be removed because of the number of fluids, such as oil, fuel and antifreeze, that had spilled.What should you do?WGAL spoke to Pennsylvania State Police about what you should, and should not, do if you are involved in massive crash. “If you’re standing along the road with your phone, recording some video and a car comes spinning out of control, I don’t know how well you’re going to make out when that car hits you,” Trooper David Boehm said.As far as what you should do, Boehm said every situation is different.”Nobody can answer the question of what you should do. That’s something that you’re going to have to decide,” he said.However, Boehm said there are two options:Stay in your car with your seat belt fastened.If you do get out, Boehm said to run and get far away from the road. Second huge crash in central Pennsylvania this monthMonday’s crash is the second time this month there has been a large chain-reaction crash on a central Pennsylvania road. On March 12, 70 cars, SUVs, trucks and tractor-trailers were involved in a crash on Route 581 in Lower Allen Township, Cumberland County. Crews at the scene told WGAL that a snowstorm may have played a role.No one was killed in that crash, but some people were treated for injuries.A man with a roadside assistance company took a three-minute walk through the wreckage. See that video below.Stay with WGAL for updates on this developing story.|| Download the WGAL app | Get breaking news email alerts ||

Pennsylvania State Police released official numbers for Monday’s massive, deadly pileup on Interstate 81 near Minersville, Pennsylvania, in Schuylkill County.

The huge crash transformed a stretch of I-81 between the Tremont/Tower City exit and Highridge Park Road into a chaotic, smoking scene. Initially, rescuers were unable to search through all of the wreckage because of the number of vehicles on fire.

The crash happened at 10:30 a.m. Monday.

On Wednesday, Pennsylvania State Police released the following figures:

  • Six people killed.
  • Twenty-four people injured.
  • 80 vehicles involved.
  • Of those vehicles, 39 were commercial, 41 were passenger.
  • One portion of I-81 was closed for 40 hours.

Police have not released the names of any of the victims.

Some of the bodies were badly burned.

Harrowing video captures crash as it happened

Mike Moye was involved in the I-81 crash. He got out of his car and started shooting video along the snow-covered interstate.

Moye’s first-person account showed burning tractor-trailers, a person almost getting hit, an out-of-control tow truck and more. Please note there is profanity and some may find the video disturbing. You can watch it below:

‘I was hearing loud bangs, explosions’

Pennsylvania State Police said the huge crash was caused by a snow squall. One woman caught up in it spoke to a local news crew about the terrifying experience.

“The snow came out of nowhere. I was just driving back and then could see only one car in front of me and then it went fully white, I couldn’t even see three feet in front of me,” Lillie Weaver said. “I was hearing loud bangs, explosions and then I saw the smoke. That was the one thing I could see was black smoke from the tractor-trailer.”

Aerial video shows scale of devastation

Several aerial videos demonstrated just how big the Schuylkill County crash was.

On the day of the crash, a drone flew above the still-smoking scene. See that video below.

One day later, additional aerial video was released showing a tangled mass of wrecked tractor-trailers still sitting in the northbound lanes of I-81. At the time that video was captured, crews were about halfway done with cleanup. See that video below.

Difficulties reopening I-81

I-81 fully reopened around 1 a.m. Wednesday, more than 40 hours after the crash happened.

After towing the vehicles away, crews had to mill the roadway.

The top layer of asphalt had to be removed because of the number of fluids, such as oil, fuel and antifreeze, that had spilled.

What should you do?

WGAL spoke to Pennsylvania State Police about what you should, and should not, do if you are involved in massive crash.

“If you’re standing along the road with your phone, recording some video and a car comes spinning out of control, I don’t know how well you’re going to make out when that car hits you,” Trooper David Boehm said.

As far as what you should do, Boehm said every situation is different.

“Nobody can answer the question of what you should do. That’s something that you’re going to have to decide,” he said.

However, Boehm said there are two options:

  1. Stay in your car with your seat belt fastened.
  2. If you do get out, Boehm said to run and get far away from the road.

Second huge crash in central Pennsylvania this month

Monday’s crash is the second time this month there has been a large chain-reaction crash on a central Pennsylvania road.

On March 12, 70 cars, SUVs, trucks and tractor-trailers were involved in a crash on Route 581 in Lower Allen Township, Cumberland County. Crews at the scene told WGAL that a snowstorm may have played a role.

No one was killed in that crash, but some people were treated for injuries.

A man with a roadside assistance company took a three-minute walk through the wreckage. See that video below.

 

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