Michigan State Police say two children are among the victims of a deadly accident on I-75 in Detroit Thursday.
The accident happened around 9:30 a.m. and shut down the highway in both directions near Springwells Street for several hours. Traffic reopened to traffic on the northbound and southbound lanes of I-75 around 4 p.m.
Police confirmed two children and one adult, a 54-year-old Allen Park man, died in the crash, which was caused by whiteout conditions. The crash left 19 others hurt.
The two children killed in the crash were a 7-year-old boy and a 9-year-old girl, both from Canada.
Michigan State Police Lt. Michael Shaw said white out weather conditions are to blame for the crash. He said cars started to crash into each other at Dearborn Street. Several semi-trucks were also halted in their tracks and remained stacked on the interstate in a Tetris-like pattern. Drivers were unable to see the wrecks ahead of them and ended up slamming into each other.
The crash scene was more than a mile long.
Shaw said officers went car to car to make sure nobody was trapped. Most of the people who were hurt complained of back, neck and head pains. As many as 200 cars, many of which are simply stuck at the scene, were involved.
Breakdown of those taken to hospitals:
Two children were taken to Childrens Hopsital -- one died of severe head injuries and one remains hospitalized.
Seven people were admitted to Detroit Receiving Hospital. One has been discharged. Six remain hospitalized with conditions ranging from good to critical.
The Red Cross:
The Red Cross, Southeastern Michigan Region will be providing canteen service to the first responders and people on the scene of the multi-car accident on I-75 in the area of Springwells in Southwest, Detroit.
Canteen service includes, refreshments and food for first responders and individuals on the scene of a disaster.
Local 4 spoke with several drivers at the scene who said they were in shock, but were able to get out of their cars safely and get off the interstate. They said white-out weather conditions made it very hard to see and the chain-reaction crash.
“I slowed down because of the weather, with the white-out, I tried to get out of the way and next thing …slammed into a truck," said one driver.
Several drivers said they tried to help others who were stuck in their cars before rescue crews got on the scene.
Witnesses described some cars being "crushed like accordions."