State police continue to investigate a Friday afternoon crash on Interstate 10 at the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge that left two dead.
Authorities responded to a fiery crash involving four 18-wheelers on Interstate 10 eastbound near the Atchafalaya River overpass.
The preliminary investigation concluded the four 18-wheelers were traveling in the right lane when the last 18-wheeler, driven by Ricky Chester of Ohio, failed to stop with traffic congestion causing a chain reaction pile-up. Ricky Chester and his passenger, wife Karen Chester, received fatal injuries and were pronounced dead on the scene, according to a news release.
Following the crash, two of the trailers caught fire leading to smoke engulfing all lanes of Interstate 10. Both directions of Interstate 10 were closed through Saturday morning. I-10 westbound was re-opened at approximately 11 a.m. Saturday, with I-10 eastbound re-opening Saturday afternoon.
A trailer also dislodged from one of the 18-wheelers causing it to travel over the guardrail and fall to the ground below.
The crash remains under investigation, but state police urge drivers to remain attentive behind the wheel as distracted driving continues to be one of the leading causes of crashes in the state.