Watch CBS News

Deaths from Illinois dust storm crash rise to 7

Dust storm leads to fatal Illinois highway pileup
Dust storm leads to fatal pileup on Illinois highway 01:45

Deaths from the Illinois dust storm pile-up rose to seven people due to "remains confusion," Illinois state police said in a news release on Tuesday. 

The severity of the highway crash made identifying remains difficult and state police said "what was previously believed to be the remains of one individual was two." 

Investigators initially thought that six people had died in the 72-vehicle pile-up that occurred shortly before 11 a.m. on I-55 near Farmersville on Monday in rural Illinois. 

High winds blew soil onto the roadway, obscuring visibility, CBS Chicago reported. Some of the cars were burnt and damaged beyond recognition. 

The coroner confirmed the death of 88-year-old Shirley Harper of Franklin, Wisconsin, state police said. The Illinois State Police is working with the Montgomery County Coroner's Office to identify the rest of the fatalities, state police said.

State Police said 37 people ranging from 2 to 80 years old were transported to area hospitals. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.