PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island State Police have confirmed two people are dead following a crash in Pawtucket.
Police responded to a crash near Exit 28 on I-95 northbound around 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
According to State Police Lt. John Charbonneau, a car switching lanes struck a car in the high-speed lane, causing it to lose control.
That car flipped and jumped the median barrier, landing on the northbound side of the highway. The car was then struck by another car.
Two of the passengers inside the car that flipped, a brother and sister from Cumberland, were killed.
“Two people died and the third person, the operator, was also injured with non-life-threatening injuries,” said Lt. Charbonneau.
Police said the man’s wife was driving – he was the front seat passenger and his sister was seated in the backseat.
According to police, the male victim was in his 20s. His sister was in her 30s. Police said the sister is a Cumberland native, but was living in Virginia.
Charbonneau said everyone involved in the crash was wearing a seatbelt.
“I would say that you have to exercise caution. We’re talking an accident that’s 4:30 in the afternoon on a relatively clear day, the weather was not a factor, speed was not a factor as we know it. You just have to be careful,” Charbonneau said.
The four people in the other two cars were not seriously hurt.
At this time, it does not appear alcohol or speed were factors in the crash. Police said the crash appears to be a “freak accident,” but officials are still investigating.
It is possible the driver at fault could face charges.
“We’re not ruling out criminal charges, we haven’t gotten to that point, but we’re trying to gain all of the facts as we know it the best we can,” Lt. Charbonneau said.
Police are not releasing the victims’ names yet because they say they are still notifying family members.
The highway was shut down while crews worked to clear the scene. Eyewitness News crews nearby said traffic was backed up for miles on both sides of the highway.