AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — 19 people were injured in an accident involving a Silver Lining tour bus and tractor-trailer loaded with U.S. mail on I-64 east near the top of Afton Mountain.
Virginia State Police said they responded to a multi-vehicle crash on mile marker 100 near the Augusta and Nelson County line at 4:30 a.m. Sunday morning.
“A tractor-trailer was traveling east on I-64, when the driver lost control and the tractor-trailer overturned across the roadway,” VSP said. “A commercial bus traveling in the eastbound lane was unable to avoid the tractor-trailer and struck it.”
The impact of the crash split the tractor-trailer in half, VSP said.
The Silver Lining tour bus ran off the right side of the highway and came to rest against the guardrail. The bus had more than 20 passengers on board.
Alexander Burruss owner of Silver Lining told 8News the bus was on it’s way back from Charles Town, West Virginia heading to Charlottesville. Burruss said the passengers are a regular group that charters the bus frequently to go to West Virginia.
Burruss’ brother 62-year-old Andrew L. Burruss, was driving the bus at the time of the accident. He was taken to the hospital for non-life threatening injuries.
According to Virginia State Police, 15 people — including the two bus drivers — were taken to UVA Medical Center and 4 others were transported to Augusta Medical. The injuries range from minor to serious.
VSP said 44-year-old James Proffit of Suffolk — the tractor-trailer driver — is being treated for serious but non-life threatening injuries.
“There were at least seven other minor crashes that occurred in the eastbound lanes of I-64 immediately following the initial crash,” VSP said in an update. No one in those minor crashes sustained injuries.
Initial reports said it was a mass casualty accident, but according to VSP there are no confirmed fatalities.
Dozens of crews worked to clean the scene.
“Road conditions on Afton Mountain are slick and need to be treated by VDOT,” VSP advised.
VDOT treated the roads and all lanes opened in both directions around 9 a.m.
Virginia State Police said heavy fog and icy roads were to blame for the crash.
The Virginia State Police Motor Carrier Safety Team responded to the scene to assist with the crash investigation. The U.S. Postal Inspector also responded to the scene since the tractor-trailer was loaded with U.S. mail.
Stay with 8News for updates.