A deadly winter storm hit south-central Wyoming over the weekend along Interstate 80. So far, the Wyoming Highway Patrol has reported three deaths as well as “multiple injuries.”
“Weather is reported to be a factor in the crashes.” – Wyoming Highway Patrol
Troopers said they were notified about several crashes near mileposts 181 and 184, about 170 miles west of Cheyenne. Troopers said more than 100 vehicles, including tractor-trailers, were involved in the crashes, which still had the interstate shut down in both directions Monday afternoon.
The crashes happened around 3:40 p.m. MST on Sunday during snowfall and strong winds. That part of the country is notorious for dangerous winter weather, according to many people in the trucking industry. A fair amount of freight moves along I-80 between the Midwest and markets in the Pacific Northwest and Northern California.
The staff at one hospital initially had a hard time keeping up with the number of accident victims coming through its doors. Memorial Hospital of Carbon County in Rawlins told the Casper Star-Tribune that hospital officials set up a temporary patient holding area in a cafeteria as victims kept arriving.
The Highway Patrol announced on its website Monday morning that the east and westbound lanes remained closed while troopers continued to investigate the crashes. According to the announcement, “weather is reported to be a factor in the crashes.”
The Highway Patrol estimated it will reopen the road sometime Tuesday afternoon.