NORTON (CBS) – A wrong-way crash left one person dead and five others hurt near the Taunton-Norton line overnight.
It happened just after 11 p.m. Wednesday on Interstate 495 near exit 9.
State Police said the driver, 84-year-old Arnold Reda of Foxboro, was traveling north near Exit 13 in Mansfield in his Toyota Camry, when for some unknown reason, he made a u-turn and began traveling south in the northbound lanes.
Moments later, he collided with two other cars. One of those cars burst into flames.
“It was an extensive collision, pretty much head-on,” said Taunton Fire Department Captain Steven Lavigne.
Reda died at the scene.
Five others involved in the crash, including two boys ages 12 and 10, were hurt. They were taken to hospitals with what are described as serious, but non-life threatening injuries.
According to Lavigne, a Good Samaritan stopped to help pull victims out of their cars.
“He smashed the rear window, or one of the windows, with his bare hands and pulled the children out of the vehicle, prior to the vehicle becoming engulfed in fire,” he said.
The road was shut down for several hours overnight, but was reopened before sunrise.
Lavigne said this is not the first wrong-way crash on this stretch of 495.
“Unfortunately, we’re used to it. We run that stretch of highway all the time,” he said.
No other information is available at this point in the investigation.