ELOY, AZ - Five people, including three children, were killed Saturday evening in a multi-vehicle crash along Interstate 10.
A Ford F250 pickup truck was traveling westbound along Interstate 10 north of Picacho Peak when the tire tread separated causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle, according to Raul Garcia, spokesman for the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
He said the pickup truck entered the eastbound lanes of the I-10 and collided with a commercial truck tractor, which was also pulling a semi-trailer.
A third vehicle also collided with the pickup truck, he said.
Two women and three children -- a 12-year-old boy, 9-year-old girl, and 7-year-old girl -- inside the Ford pickup were pronounced dead at the scene, according to Garcia. The driver of the pickup was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries.
A spokeswoman with the Chandler Unified School District confirmed the children killed in the accident were Tyler, Kayla and Brianna Curley. She said classmates at Bologna Elementary School would be told of the children's deaths on Monday and that grief counselors would be made available.
Police identified the adult victims as Shelly Renee Blackmore, 49, of Gilbert, and Danielle Blackmore, 20, of Gilbert. Shelley is the children's grandmother and Danielle their aunt.
The driver of the pickup was identified as Tracy William Blackmore. He was taken to Maricopa Medical Center in serious condition.
The driver of the commercial vehicle was taken to a hospital with minor injuries. His co-driver was not injured in the crash, he said.
The occupants of the third vehicle were not injured.
Eastbound Interstate 10 near Picaho Peak was closed Saturday evening at 6:25 p.m. and reopened Sunday morning.