UPDATE: According to the Rabun volunteer fire department, there were actually 21 people on board the van that crashed. Initial reports from Alabama State troopers said there were 15 people involved.
Multiple people were transported to the hospital after the van they were traveling in blew a tire causing it to lose control and flip multiple times into the median.
The single-vehicle crash happened around 10:45 Friday morning on I-65 Southbound in Baldwin County near mile marker 40.
Baldwin County Sheriff Department Spokesperson Anthony Lowery said a deputy responding to a nearby traffic stop witnessed the crash that ejected three people who were life-flighted to the hospital.
“Right now, we believe there were not even enough seats for the people who were there. There were people sitting on the floorboard, sitting by the sliding door. On top of that, they had a homemade suitcase rack with luggage for 15 people. Right now, we’ve got to believe that it was probably overloaded,” Lowery said, describing the van’s occupants as Mexican nationalist with a Mexico license plate.
Traffic in both directions was backed up for miles until responders could reopen the lanes just after 12:30 pm.
All of the van’s occupants were transported to area hospitals for injuries that range from a few scratches to three that are much more severe.