Interstate 35E in Carrollton started separating Tuesday night, causing several serious accidents, police say.
Jolene DeVito, public information officer for Carrollton police, said that between 6:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., police received a flood of calls reporting serious accidents on I-35 eastbound all in the same location.
“At first we thought people were calling in the same accident and describing the cars differently, but then we realized we had five major accidents all in the same area,” DeVito said.
She said the department considers an accident major if there are injuries.
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Once officers got there, they realized the highway had sunk near the Crosby Road exit, triggering a chain of accidents.
One of the squad cars was even hit, but the officer was not in the car and no one was injured.
DeVito said there was about an 8-inch gap between the center and left lanes. The right lane remained open to traffic.
DeVito said officials are assuming the collapse was weather-related due to the high volume of rain in the area but they do not know for sure.
Earlier in the week, a large pothole had formed nearby on I-35 that could also be connected to the weather, DeVito said.
The Texas Department of Transportation was on the scene Tuesday night to assess conditions, DeVito said. As of Tuesday night, the left and center lanes were closed indefinitely.