A fatal seven-vehicle collision on Thursday morning shut down northbound Interstate 5 north of Eight Mile Road at Flag City.
According to Officer Charlie Katzakian of the California Highway Patrol, the collision involving four big rigs and three other vehicles took place at approximately 7:34 a.m., killing two people.
All lanes of northbound Interstate 5 from Eight Mile Road to Highway 12 were closed until after 2 p.m. while the wreckage was cleared from the roadway.
An investigation found that two collisions took place, the first of which involved a big rig striking a truck on northbound Interstate 5 south of Highway 12, according to a post on Stockton CHP’s Facebook page.
With traffic stopped as CHP worked to clear the roadway from the initial collision, the second collision occurred on northbound Interstate 5 north of Eight Mile Road.
Six vehicles were stopped in the right lane. From front to back, the vehicles were a Hyundai, a Dodge Ram, a Dodge Journey, a Peterbilt big rig and two Volvo big rigs.
While the vehicles were stopped, a big rig driven by a 40-year-old woman from Arizona approached from the rear and struck the Hyundai. The impact caused a chain reaction with all six vehicles as each was pushed into the vehicle ahead.
After the collision, the Peterbilt, Hyundai and Dodge Ram became fully engulfed in fire.
As a result, the driver of the Hyundai — a 50-year-old man from Stockton — and the driver of the Dodge Ram — a 36-year-old man from Tracy — suffered fatal injuries on the scene.
The driver of the Dodge Journey, a 47-year-old woman from Stockton, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.
No other injuries were reported, and drugs and/or alcohol were found not to have been a factor.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information should call Stockton CHP at 209-938-4800.