‘Multiple fatalities,’ dozens injured in dust storm pileup on Illinois interstate

Multiple people were reported killed and dozens of others wounded on Monday in car crashes along Inter state 55 in southern Illinois 

during a dust storm, state police said.

The New York Times late Monday reported six dead.

Roughly 40 to 60 passenger cars and several big-rig trucks were involved in the crashes shortly after 11 a.m. CDT, an Illinois 

State Police spokesman said during an afternoon press conference. Two of the trucks caught fire, and it was possible one of them had exploded.

T​he Weather Channel reported the pileup occurred on I-55 south of Springfield, where there were recorded wind gusts of 35-45 mph that kicked up farm soil.

Some 30 people were transported to hospitals with injuries, the spokesman said. 

The highway remained closed in both directions several hours later from mile marker 63 to mile marker 80.

“My team and I are closely following the devastating crash on I-55 as authorities learn more. Please be safe as this situation continues to unfold,” U.S. Representative Nikki Budzinski of Illinois 

said on Twitter.