MOUNT PLEASANT, Wis. - New video, released by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, shows the moment a semi exploded on the interstate in Racine County.
Two people died Wednesday as a result of the fiery crash, which also involved two semis and several other vehicles.
"In my 24 years, this is the worst accident I have ever been a part of," Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling said during a news conference Wednesday night.
The two semis burst into flames near Mount Pleasant, killing both drivers. Authorities said one semi headed southbound hit a construction barrier, overcorrected and crashed into a median.
Given the size of the semi and the interstate speeds, the semi shoved the median wall into the northbound lanes. This caused several cars heading north to crash, injuring two people.
The other semi, also traveling north, went into a ditch to avoid hitting the vehicles had just crashed. Both semis exploded during the crash, which caused several of the nearby vehicles to catch on fire.
Schmaling is calling the second semi driver a hero. Schmaling said he drove off the road to prevent a crash with three other vehicles. He said if the semi driver hadn't risk his own life, more people could have died.
"This unfortunate deceased individual is a hero for risking his own life to avoid crashing into somebody," Schmaling said.
The crash remains under investigation at this time.
Interstate 41/94 was closed in both directions as a result of the crash. Officials with the Racine County Sheriff's Office say the northbound lanes reopened early Thursday while the southbound were able to reopen late Wednesday.
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