St. TAMMANY PARISH, La. -- State police were called to the scene of a double fatal crash on I-12 in Lacombe Wednesday. One other person was seriously injured, according to state police.
The crash occurred when an 18-wheeler drifted off the roadway into a line of trees, causing it to jackknife.
The Freightliner became engulfed in flames, trapping the three passengers in the cab portion of the vehicle.
Witnesses to the crash were able to successfully remove David Sarty, 25, of Hope Mills, North Carolina.
However, the remaining two occupants were not able to be located due to the extent of the fire. The driver Ronald Phelps, 25, of Whitsett, North Carolina, was pronounced dead at the scene. Another passenger Tiffany Payne, 21, of White Oak, North Carolina, was also pronounced dead at the scene.
Sarty was transported to University Medical Center in New Orleans with critical injuries.
Seatbelt use and driver impairment is unknown at this time.
Traffic was slowed eastbound on the highway near Lacombe as authorities worked the crash.
The crash occurred at mile marker 72, which is two miles west of the nearest exit, Highway 434 in Lacombe.