FORT WORTH, Texas — At least five people were killed and dozens more injured Thursday morning following an icy 100-vehicle freeway pileup, according to Fort Worth police and fire officials.
Thirty-six people were taken to hospitals from the crash, several with critical injuries, said Matt Zavadsky, a spokesman for MedStar, which provides the ambulance service for the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
Numerous people were trapped in the wreckage as up to 100 cars and trucks – including some 18-wheelers – were involved in the 6 a.m. crash along Interstate 35, with some that were wedged under others, police told ABC News.
“The vehicles are just mangled,” Zavadsky said. “Multiple tow trucks are on scene. It’s going to take a lot to disentangle this wreck.”
I-35 was completely blocked at the 28th Street bridge in Fort Worth and the pile-up was quickly declared a “mass casualty” event as initial emergency crews arrived.
The accident scene covered about 1.5 miles along the interstate, ABC affiliate WFAA reported.
“Someone reported hearing drivers screaming from their cars, first-responders had trouble getting those in need of treatment away from the scene,” WFAA reporter Eric Alvarez tweeted from the scene.
Police blamed the I-35 crash on the weather as freezing rain caused slick road conditions in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
“The weather conditions are definitely a factor in this massive multi-car accident,” Fort Worth police Officer Daniel Segura said.
“The roadway was so treacherous from the ice that several of the first responders were falling on the scene,” Zavadsky added.
Areas of light freezing rain and some sleet were in the Dallas/Fort Worth area Thursday morning. About one-10th of an inch of ice accumulated just north of Fort Worth, the National Weather Service said.
North Texas was under a Winter Weather Advisory until 6 p.m. Thursday because of ice accumulation, which resulted in “very slippery sidewalks, roads and bridges,” the weather service said.
“So many traffic/accidents this morning, especially across the DFW Metroplex,” the weather service tweeted. “These events are so dangerous because the ice is spotty. We can’t stress enough that road conditions could go from good to dangerous within blocks. Take it slow out there.”
Farther south, in Austin, more than two dozen vehicles were involved in a pileup on an icy road, and one person was injured, emergency officials said.
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