A pileup involving more than 130 vehicles along Interstate-35W in Fort Worth shut down the highway Thursday and left multiple people trapped in their vehicles.
- Jason Allen, love to begin with you today at the scene of the massive pileup in Fort Worth. And just want to look over your shoulder there, nowhere near cleared, right?
JASON ALLEN: No, they're not. They're still doing a lot of work out here, Doug. As you mentioned, we just learned here in the last half hour the death toll from this accident is now up to six, the number of people who have sought treatment for injuries now up to 65. And that number could be growing. We'll explain more on that in just a moment.
Want to give you another look here at the highway at this hour. It hasn't changed significantly from what we showed you live here an hour ago. Some of the tractor trailers are still in pretty precarious positions. They have not started moving a few of them that are still in the middle of the wreckage, but back toward the ends of the pileup, we are seeing some movement from a few of the wreckers that are starting to move in closer and get some of the other vehicles involved out of this.
In this briefing in the last half hour, we heard from the new police chief here in Fort Worth, Neil Noakes. He said that ice likely is the preliminary cause of this wreck. Of course, that's what we had been thinking since this morning, what we've heard from drivers, who said their cars just started to slide. But they will look into that. They will also look into, as part of this crash investigation, was this road treated.
Now, a spokesperson for the [? NTE ?] [? Express ?] Lanes, which manages this, told me earlier in the day that, yes, it was pre-treated on Tuesday, and it had been spot-checked since then. Another statement that I received from them just a few minutes ago again backed that up, saying crews had started back on Tuesday, continued over the last few days, and will continue working on these lanes over the weekend.
This is about a half-mile-long scene. The fire and police departments and ambulance service here said today it's like nothing they had ever seen in their careers. But they triaged it. They set up transport sectors to handle it. There were four officers who were injured from falling while they were out here on the ice. And I'd mentioned that it's possible the number of injured could grow. Here's what a spokesperson from MedStar said about that, explaining that today.
MATT ZAVADKSY: So that means that people who may have left the scene felt fine, adrenaline running through their system. When the adrenaline wears off, they then sought medical care. That number is likely to continue to increase as more people tonight, tomorrow. So we'll try and keep track of a final count of the people who sought medical care at hospitals as part of that process.
JASON ALLEN: And because of the time of the day this happened, six o'clock in the morning, this being a commuting route, a lot of the people involved, most all the people involved were adults. A lot of them were headed to work at the time. In fact, Matt Zavadksy said that a number of people who were involved in the wreck, they noticed they were wearing scrubs. They were health care workers. They were actually on their way to hospitals this morning when they were involved in all of this. Live in Fort Worth tonight, Jason Allen, CBS 11 News.