Wrong way driver collision on I-80 led to five deaths, three critical injuries Sunday

(Carbon County, WY) – A fatal crash occurred Sunday, January 22, at milepost 219 on Interstate 80 east of Rawlins, which resulted in five deaths and three critical injuries, according to a release issued by the Wyoming Highway Patrol (WHP) on January 23 and a WHP preliminary report posted on January 24.

The deceased were later identified in the preliminary report as Arkansas residents Salomonanjel Correa (21), Ava Luplow (18), Magdalene Franco(20), Emily Prime (18), Andrea Prime (23).

WHP troopers were notified of a truck driving the wrong way on Interstate 80 Sunday evening at 6:52 p.m., and were minutes later notified of a collision involving the wrong-way driver and other vehicles, the release states.

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Preliminary information has revealed that the truck was headed east on I-80 on the wrong side of the interstate, where it then collided with a commercial truck and a passenger car.

As the truck collided with the passenger car, a driver of a second commercial truck attempted to avoid the approaching truck by driving into the median.

This commercial truck exited the median and entered the eastbound travel lanes, where it collided head-on with a second truck, and both immediately became engulfed in flames.    

The five occupants of the second passenger truck were fatally injured in the crash, and some of the other motorists involved in the collision were transported to hospitals with critical injuries.

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The driver of the first truck driving the wrong way has been arrested on suspicion of impairment, according to the release, and may receive future charges as the investigation unfolds.

This is an ongoing investigation.

These are the 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th  fatalities on Wyoming’s roadways in 2023 compared to 1 in 2022, 8 in 2021, and 3 in 2020, to date.

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