Arkansas crash leaves 5 dead, 5 hurt after van collides with truck

Authorities are investigating a crash in southeast Arkansas that left five people dead and another five injured after a large truck collided with a van belonging to a school serving adults with disabilities. 

The crash happened Monday afternoon on U.S. 65 when the 15-passenger van didn’t yield when crossing the highway in rural Chicot County and collided with a truck that was hauling cooking oil, Arkansas State Police spokesman Bill Sadler said Tuesday.

“At this juncture in the investigation, it appears that the driver of the van did not see the oncoming traffic,” Sadler said Tuesday morning.

The front of the 18-wheeler hit the right side of the school van, causing both vehicles to veer off the highway and onto the side of the road, according to a copy of the crash report.

Sadler said the van belonged to C.B. King Memorial School, a nonprofit that provides services in several Arkansas counties to people with developmental delays or disabilities, according to its website.

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The three men and two women killed in the crash ranged in age from 19 to 73, police said. The drivers of both vehicles were injured, along with three other passengers in the van.

“Our C B King Family is hurting tonight,” the school’s director of programs, Lora Medina, said in a statement Monday. “We don’t have the words right now to express our pain. The Adult Center in Arkansas City will be closed for now as we process what has happened.”

The conditions of those injured in the crash was unclear Tuesday.

State police plan to have a reconstruction team analyze the crash and determine how it occurred, Sadler said.

The crash happened south of Dermott, which is about 100 miles southeast of Little Rock in the Mississippi River Delta region.

Contributing: The Associated Press

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