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6 killed in 130-vehicle pile-up on icy Texas freeway

DALLAS (AP) – An enormous crash involving greater than 130 automobiles on an icy Texas freeway left at the very least six lifeless and dozens injured Thursday amid a winter storm that introduced freezing rain, sleet and snow over elements of america.

On the scene of the crash on Interstate 35 close to downtown Fort Value, a tangle of semi-trailers, automobiles and vans crashed and flipped in every single place, with some automobiles on the others.

“There have been a lot of individuals who had been trapped inside the limits of their automobiles and want the hydraulic rescue tools to get them out efficiently,” mentioned Fort Value Hearth Chief Jim Davis.

At the very least 65 folks have sought care in hospitals, 36 of whom had been taken by ambulance from the scene of the crash, many with severe accidents, mentioned Matt Zavadsky, spokesperson for MedStar, which supplies the service. ambulance for the area.

The accident occurred round 6 a.m., as many hospitals and emergency staff had been on their solution to and from work, so a few of these concerned had been healthcare staff and emergency responders , together with cops, officers mentioned.

Zavadsky mentioned his crews had been carrying a combination of sand and salt in ambulances, which they started to make use of on the scene. At one level, he mentioned, one of many ambulances was hit, nevertheless it suffered solely minor harm and the crew members are tremendous.

“The pavement was so harmful from the ice that a number of of the primary responders fell on the scene,” Zavadsky mentioned.

The ice storm got here like a Polar vortex – the swirling air that’s usually discovered above the Earth’s poles – moved close to the Canada-U.S. border, leading to colder climate additional south than ordinary, mentioned Steve Goss , a meteorologist on the Nationwide Climate Service Storm Forecasting Middle in Norman, Oklahoma.

“Because of this, we get unusually or unusually chilly air for the season that’s spreading southward over a lot of america east of the Rocky Mountains,” he mentioned.

In Tennessee, police responded to about 30 visitors collisions and a few flights had been delayed at Memphis Worldwide Airport after freezing rain and sleet. In Kentucky, the governor declared a state of emergency to unlock funds and assist companies coordinate by responding to experiences of slippery roads and downed energy traces. And in southern Indiana, faculties and authorities workplaces have closed.

In a suburb of Austin, greater than two dozen automobiles had been concerned in a congestion on an icy freeway, and 5 folks had been taken to a hospital, emergency officers mentioned.

Goss mentioned smaller disturbances transferring by means of the polar jet stream will deliver “winter climate hits” to southern elements of the nation.

He mentioned some areas that don’t usually obtain snowfall will seemingly see excessive quantities of it over the subsequent few days. He mentioned present estimates present some areas of the southern plains may attain a foot or extra.

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Related Press editors Adrian Sainz in Memphis, Tennessee, Rebecca Reynolds Yonker in Louisville, Ky., And Ken Kusmer in Indianapolis contributed to this report.

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