FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – All lanes of Interstate-35W north of downtown Fort Worth have now reopened following Thursday’s massive pileup that left six dead and dozens injured.
Crews spent the entire day Thursday and most of Friday cleaning up and repairing the damaged road surface.READ MORE: Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler Dies At 82
About 133 vehicles that included multiple 18-wheelers are now all gone after they were piled up on a bridge in a section of the highway north of downtown. There were just a few remaining road repair trucks and police vehicles late in the afternoon.
The identities of the six victims who died were released: 54-year-old William Williams, 49-year-old Christopher Vardy, 47-year-old Michael Wells, 34-year old Tiffany Louann Gerred, 45-year-old Aaron Watson, and 46-year-old Tamara Mendoza Querales.
The wreck prompted Fort Worth’s new police chief, Neil Noakes, to make his first post as chief on Twitter. “Yesterday we witnessed the most devastating accident that anyone can ever remember happening in the @CityofFortWorth. The loss of life & the destruction was absolutely heartbreaking, but the response by @fortworthpd, @FortWorthFire, @MedStarEMSInfo, wrecker drivers and everyone working behind the scenes was nothing short of amazing,” he wrote.
However, the police department would not answer questions Friday about the wreck, the investigation or any of the work done since Thursday afternoon’s update.READ MORE: 2 Women Accused Of Using Racial Slurs Arrested After Argument Diverts Flight Out Of DFW
There was also no new information from the fire department, MedStar or the mayor’s office on Friday.
North Tarrant Express, which manages the express lanes where the pileup happened, released a statement Friday evening:
The entire NTE family joins the greater community in sorrow over the events of Thursday morning. We will make every resource available to Fort Worth Police and Fire and assist in any way as we all process this tragedy. Further, we are working with authorities as they investigate this incident.
Our crews employed Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) approved processes and began pre-treatment of the corridor well ahead of the storm earlier this week. In the hours and days following the accident, the North Tarrant Express 35W road safety teams, together with Fort Worth emergency responders, worked to clear the interstate corridor and identify damages and any potential safety issues related to the accident. The road safety team is coordinating with the City of Fort Worth and TxDOT to ensure all safety precautions have been made as the corridor reopens to traffic.
As the storm intensifies over the next few days, we are continuing to take appropriate precautions, and prepare our roadways, including pre-treating the roadways across all segments of the highway, whether the general purpose lanes, managed lanes, frontage roads and ramps. Our team is diligently monitoring the entire corridor and deploying teams to spot-treat specific areas as icy conditions develop. In light of the forecast for the next several days, we encourage everyone to avoid unnecessary travel. If you must be on the road, please drive with caution.MORE NEWS: 17-Year-Old Arrested After Man Found Dead At Dallas Park In November
Brine and sand trucks were seen in the area as they treated the roads before reopening.