STONINGTON — Traffic on Interstate 95 south was brought to a standstill late Tuesday morning after a four-vehicle crash that left both a flatbed truck and a minivan engulfed in flames.
Three people were hurt in the collision, with two sustaining serious injuries.
Firefighters with the Old Mystic, Wequetequock, Center Groton and Mystic fire departments and personnel with the Stonington, Mystic River and Groton ambulance corps all responded to I-95 south in the area of Exit 90 around 11:30 a.m. after receiving multiple calls reporting a serious multi-car crash. Connecticut State Police, representatives of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, and staff with the Department of Transportation also aided in the response, fire officials said.
According to police and fire officials, the crash involved a flatbed truck, a stake body truck, a minivan and a car. The investigation is ongoing, state police indicated, and further details of the crash were not released on Tuesday afternoon.
The names of those involved have not been released.
Old Mystic Fire Chief Kenneth Richards Jr. said occupants of the flatbed truck and minivan were able to escape the wreck, but responding firefighters arrived to find two of the four vehicles fully engulfed in flames. Several firefighters battled the blaze, while others were involved in aiding with rescue and medical response operations.
He said three people suffered injuries and were taken to Lawrence+Memorial Hospital in New London. Two of the patients had serious injuries and were provided advanced support in the ambulance by paramedics with L+M Hospital, Richards said.
The morning crash caused significant delays and detours along Interstate 95. By noon, the backup had extended back beyond Exit 91 and a combination of safety hazards and smokey conditions forced first responders to close the highway entirely for over an hour.
Police and firefighters also remained on the highway with lane closures through mid-afternoon, in part to address an issue with a diesel fuel tank. They were expected to remain onsite until after 3:30 p.m., officials said.
During the response, Poquonnock Bridge firefighters and an engine with the Mystic Fire Department responded to a second crash with entrapment that occurred at the intersection of Whitehall Avenue and Pequot Trail in Old Mystic. Officials said crews were able to extricate the driver in what was described as a one-car incident and at least one person was taken to a nearby hospital with injuries.
Further details of the second crash were not immediately available.