1 dead, several injured in Iowa pileup involving 70+ vehicles - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

1 dead, several injured in Iowa pileup involving 70+ vehicles

AMES, Iowa (WISN) -

A massive, deadly pileup involving dozens of cars on a snow-covered Interstate 35 killed one person and sent at least five others to the hospital in critical condition, authorities said Monday.

Officials with the Story County Sheriff’s Department said the crash, which involved as many as 70 cars, is the worst they’ve ever seen. The last time Des Moines saw more than 3 inches of snow was on Dec. 28, 2015, according to records.

Authorities closed part of Interstate 35 between 13th Street and U.S. 30 near Ames on Monday after the dozens of vehicles collided on the snow-covered pavement. Officials said the wrecks were caused, in part, by drivers trying to enter the freeway and crashing into existing accidents.

While the southbound lanes were closed due to multiple accidents, the northbound lanes were open to allow emergency response vehicles to rescue those stranded on the freeway.

"It's a mess. They're trying to get everyone to slow down,” Iowa State Patrol Sgt. Nathan Ludwig said.

Crashes also have at least briefly forced the closure of other roads in Iowa, including U.S. Highway 30 near Grand Junction and Interstate 80 in Clive.

One of the tour buses involved in the crash was transporting cast and crew of "Dancing with the Stars: Live! Light Up the Night."

The bus was en route to Stephens Auditorium in Ames. All the cast and crew members are fine, with some recovering from minor injuries.

Officials said in a press release Monday that, "Given this unforeseen accident, and the fact that the safety and health of our cast and crew is of utmost importance, tonight's show at Stephens Auditorium in Ames, Iowa has been (canceled).

"To anyone involved in the accident, the entire cast sends their best wishes for a speedy recovery, and their deepest apologies to all of the fans who have been waiting to see the show tonight."

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