5 people killed, including 2 children, in two separate crashes on I-5

The California Highway Patrol is investigating after a pair of deadly early morning crashes on Interstate 5.

The first happened in Merced County at Cottonwood Road just after two a.m. According to CHP, the crash involved a Dodge Caravan and a big rig. When the driver of the dodge, a 57-year-old man, slowed for traffic the big rig driver, identified as 56-year-old Braulio Martinez, failed to slow down.

According to the CHP, the big rig went into the back of the Dodge pushing it into the center median. The driver and two children of the Dodge; a 10-year-old girl and a 6-year-old girl sustained fatal injuries and were pronounced deceased at the scene. A 6-year-old girl and 19-year-old woman who were also passengers in the Dodge were transported to local hospitals from the scene.

The other fatal crash happened at Shields in Fresno County shortly after 5:00 a.m. CHP officers said that two semi-trucks were stopped due to slow traffic when a third slammed into the back of them. The male driver and a female passenger of the truck that failed to stop died.

The two deadly crashes caused traffic to stay at a stand-still during much of the morning. The Highway Patrol also reported several smaller crashes in the area due to the heavy traffic.
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