A fatal crash on I-12 involving 10 vehicles claiming four lives closed the interstate near Highway 21 near Covington.

Saturday May 27th at approximately 4 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troopers were notified of a multi-vehicle crash on I-12 east at LA 21. According to officials, an 18-wheeler, hauling avocados, was traveling in the right lane on I-12 approaching the traffic congestion when for unknown reasons, the 18-wheeler was unable to stop and started a chain reaction crash with nine other vehicles.

The 18-wheeler jackknifed during the crash and caught fire, along with three other vehicles. The driver of the 18-wheeler died on the scene and positive identification has yet to be confirmed.

During the crash, a 2014 Lexus IS350 was struck by the 18-wheeler. The driver and passenger, Yoland Simmons and Keland Simmons of Baton Rouge, were pronounced dead on the scene. A 1997 Toyota 4Runner was also struck by the 18-wheeler and the driver, Rachel Lehmann of Mandeville, was taken to the hospital where she later died.

Several individuals were taken to local hospitals with minor/moderate injuries, including a St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy, however, all are expected to make a full recovery. Impairment has not yet been determined.

Toxicology results are pending an autopsy. I-12 east reopened at approximately 2 am on May, 27, 2018.  

The crash investigation remains very active and on-going.