RUDDOCK, La. – Interstate 55 has been reopened following a State Police investigation of at least two accidents that injured three people, killed two people, and caused a complete closure of Interstate 55, southbound, between Manchac and Ruddock Tuesday morning.
I-55 was reopened by State Police just before 9:30 a.m. according to officials.
State Police say that around 4:30 a.m.Troop B investigated fatal crash involving impairment on I-55 south at mile post 9.2, in which 32-year-old Brandon Craig was driving a 2011 Kia on I-55 north in the southbound lanes.
The Kia impacted a 2006 Chevrolet head-on. The Chevrolet was driven by 31-year-old Conrad Hebert, and was traveling in the left lane on I-55 south.
A 2004 Honda driven by 59-year-old Newton Matthews was traveling behind the Chevrolet on I-55 south and attempted to avoid the crash. The Honda rolled through vehicle fluids that were on the roadway and Matthews lost control of the Honda and impacted the guardrail.
Craig (the driver of the Kia) was pronounced dead on the scene and two passengers in the Kia were transported to local hospitals with moderate injuries (front seat passenger Kori Goldsby, 22 and left rear passenger Jason Trahan, 29).
Hebert (the driver of the Chevrolet) was transported to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead from injuries sustained in the crash.
Matthews (the driver of the Honda) had minor injuries but, refused medical treatment on the scene.
Impairment is suspected for Craig and toxicology results are pending an autopsy. Impairment is not suspected for Hebert or Matthews. Craig and the passengers in the Kia were not wearing seat belts at the time of the crash. The crash remains under investigation.