WYTHE COUNTY – Two people were killed and one seriously injured in three separate crashes on Interstate 81 in Wythe County this morning. As of press time this morning, the interstate and Black Lick Road remained closed, with traffic being re-routed around the wrecks.
According to Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller, the first crash occurred in the southbound lanes in the vicinity of mile marker 60 around 3:23 a.m.
In that incident, Geller said, the driver of a tractor-trailer escaped injury when the truck overturned in the roadway. Shortly after the driver exited the truck, a southbound passenger vehicle collided with the truck. Geller said the driver of the passenger vehicle died en route to the hospital.
Only moments after that collision, Geller said, a northbound tractor-trailer ran off the left side of the interstate. After striking a bridge, the truck crashed onto Black Lick Road beneath the bridge and caught fire upon impact with the pavement.
A passenger in the second tractor-trailer was ejected from the sleeper cab, but the driver died at the scene. The passenger was airlifted to a nearby hospital with serious injuries, according to Geller.
The names of the deceased and injured are not being released pending positive identification and notification of next of kin.