Editor’s note: This report is from the day of the crash. Keep up with the latest stories by clicking here.)
JEFFERSON COUNTY – Interstate 70 will remain closed overnight after a chain-reaction crash that killed multiple people and left several others injured. A detour around the crash scene is in place for westbound traffic.
West Metro Fire says a firefighter suffered minor injuries from falling debris while working this crash. Officials say a tire may have exploded in the area leading to the falling debris. They say the firefighter’s injuries are minor.
Lakewood Police say a tractor-trailer slammed into slower traffic near West Denver Blvd. causing the pileup. A total of 12 cars and three semis were involved in the crash.
One of the semis lost a load of wood, adding to the debris on the road. At one point a vehicle ignited and caught several other cars on fire, along with the wood.
“I was trying to get to the off ramp and all you hear is this big huge BOOM and then the big black smoke just went off all over and you started hearing this popping noise and things blowing up,” said one person who witnessed the crash.
CDOT engineers are at the scene of the crash to ensure the West Denver Blvd. bridge is stable. Firefighters had to deal with a diesel fuel spill after putting out the flames.
West Metro has launched a drone to assist in the accident investigation. The drone will map the scene, giving a bird’s eye view and different perspective. pic.twitter.com/J0ztWsafDy
— WestMetroFire (@WestMetroFire) April 26, 2019
The crash happened just a few miles from an earlier, unrelated crash involving a school bus, on I-70 near Ward Road. No serious injuries were reported in that crash.