Officials confirm 3 dead in I-10 crashes near Picacho Peak - Tucson News Now

Officials confirm 3 dead in I-10 crashes near Picacho Peak

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(Source: KPHO) (Source: KPHO)
(Source: "See it, Snap it, Send it") (Source: "See it, Snap it, Send it")
(Source: "See it, Snap it, Send it") (Source: "See it, Snap it, Send it")
DPS numbers the vehicles involved; 19 total (Source: J.D. Wallace) DPS numbers the vehicles involved; 19 total (Source: J.D. Wallace)
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

UPDATE: Interstate 10 reopened around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night in both directions following multiple crashes in the Picacho Peak area, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The crashes closed down I-10 for nearly 10 hours.

At least three people are confirmed dead and several others are seriously injured, officials confirmed.

Around noon, the Arizona Department of Transportation shut down travel along the westbound side of I-10. There are two eastbound lanes of travel closed as well, according to ADOT.  The crashes are believed to be related to blowing dust in the area. A total of 19 vehicles were involved.

The crashes occurred between milepost 214 and 216, ADOT said.

ADOT and Arizona Department of Public Safety are encouraging drivers to do the following when they encounter blowing dust:

-Avoid driving into or through a dust storm. 
-If you encounter a dust storm, check traffic immediately around your vehicle (front, back and to the side) and begin slowing down.
-Do not wait until poor visibility makes it difficult to safely pull off the roadway — do it as soon as possible. Completely exit the highway if you can, away from where other vehicles may travel.
-Do not stop in a travel lane or in the emergency lane; look for a safe place to pull completely off the paved portion of the roadway
-Turn off all vehicle lights, including your emergency flashers.
-Set your emergency brake and take your foot off the brake.
-Stay in the vehicle with your seatbelts buckled and wait for the storm to pass
-Drivers of high-profile vehicles should be especially aware of changing weather conditions and travel at reduced speeds.
-Be alert that any storm can cause power outages to overhead roadway lighting and traffic signals. Drive with caution and treat all intersections without signals as having stop signs in all directions.

For more information driving tips, please visit PullAsideStayAlive.org

For the most current information about highway closures and restrictions statewide, visit ADOT's Travel Information Site at www.az511.gov, follow on Twitter (@ArizonaDOT) or call 5-1-1.

A dust storm warning has been issued for the Pinal County area until later this afternoon.

Stay with Tucson News Now for updates as they come in.

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