Fatality on I-40 near Hazen, expect detours

traffic at mile marker 183 (photo by KATV photographer Larry Kreif)

HAZEN (KATV) - At least one person was killed and another dozen hospitalized in an east Arkansas wreck Thursday afternoon, according to State Police.

Eastbound traffic was flowing again on Interstate 40 near mile marker 200 and the White River Bridge as of Thursday evening, but slowly.

Witnesses told troopers that metal debris from the roadway became airborne and hit at least one car. That halted traffic but an 18 wheeler couldn't stop in time and slammed into some of the stopped vehicles, causing a chain reaction.

Westbound traffic was diverted at the Brinkley and Hazen exits. Officials encouraged eastbound drivers to avoid the area by taking US 70 at the Carlisle exit, or by taking 165 to 79 or 167/67 to Highway 64 in Bald Knob.

State Police hoped to have the entire area clear by 6:00 Thursday evening.

KATV's Roger Susanin is at the scene. He will have the latest in a LIVE report on Channel 7 News at 6:00.