At least five people were killed in a massive pile-up car accident in Missouri involving 70 vehicles or more, according to reports.

The crash occurred Thursday morning on I-57 near Charleston in Mississippi County between the mile ten and twelve markers, KFVS reported. Mississippi County Coroner Terry Parker said that at least five individuals were killed in the accident.

Director of Mississippi County EMS Zach Bolden told the outlet that authorities believe someone slammed on their brakes, prompting a chain reaction of accidents, and noted it was foggy when first responders arrived at the scene. Bolden said one individual was airlifted from the scene while additional motorists and at least one first responder were taken to area hospitals for treatment.

The accident involved 70 vehicles or more, WPSD noted, citing early reports from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. Multiple tractor-trailers were among the vehicles in the massive wreck, the Missouri Department of Public Saftey stated. Several southeastern Missouri and southern Illinois agencies are on the scene.

“The Missouri Department of Transportation has closed I-57 in Mississippi County from the Missouri-Illinois border at the Mississippi River to Interstate 55 in Sikeston until further notice,” according to KFVS.

Both directions of the interstate are expected to be closed anywhere from four to eight hours, according to WPSD.
The Mississippi County Sheriff’s Office has told motorists not to travel to “Charleston until the accident is cleared” and to use alternate routes to get around in the area.

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