Seguin police have identified the victims of the fiery crash that killed three people and injured five others, including a Seguin police officer on Thursday.
Jason A. Howell, 48, of San Antonio, Jason N. Sanchez, 36, of San Antonio, and Joseph D. Cline, 37, of Marion were killed in the five-vehicle collision that was reported about 2:58 p.m. Thursday on Interstate 10 at the State Highway 123 Bypass overpass, Seguin Police spokesperson Sarah Chilluti Wallace said.
The wreck happened when a semi traveling east on Interstate 10 carrying meat products was cut off from other drivers who swerved to avoid hitting a Texas Department of Transportation crew that was working on the highway, Wallace said.
“The driver of the semi-truck braked abruptly to avoid a collision, causing the truck to lose its load on the highway, resulting in slick road conditions,” Wallace said. “Another semi-truck heading the same way swerved to avoid the crash but collided into a guardrail.”
The cab of the truck went over the concrete barrier still connected to the trailer that remained on the highway above.
The collision caused the truck and trailer to burst into flames, creating a “chain reaction” with four more vehicles, Wallace said.
The fire caused several explosions from the vehicles’ fuel tanks, air bags, tires, pistons and cargo, Seguin Fire Marshal Greg Dreiss said.
A Seguin police officer who arrived shortly after the collision worked to save people before all of the vehicles were fully engulfed in flames, Wallace said.
The officer, along with two other people were transported to Guadalupe Regional Medical Center for treatment. The officer was treated and released, Wallace said.
Two other people were treated at the scene for their injuries, Wallace said.
Justice of the Peace Pct. 1 Darrell Hunter ordered autopsies on the victims. They have been transported to the Travis County Medical Examiner’s Office.
All lanes of Interstate 10 were shutdown while firefighters worked to control the fire. The westbound lanes reopened about an hour later, while the eastbound lanes remained closed for several hours for responders to investigate the crash, clean up the wreck and inspect the bridge for any damage.
The wreck remains under investigation.