EYOTA, Minn. — Six people are reported dead after a crash that shut down a stretch of busy interstate in southeastern Minnesota early Friday.
The Minnesota State Patrol says a driver was going the wrong way, heading eastbound in the westbound lanes when that car struck another vehicle heading westbound on I-90 near the town of Eyota around 1:30 a.m.
Eyota is about 14 miles due east of Rochester.
The two vehicles involved were a 2005 Chrysler Sebring and a 2008 Ford Focus.
The State Patrol says each vehicle had three people inside. The victims were identified Friday afternoon. They are:
Vehicle 1: 2005 Chrysler Sebring
- Christopher Michael Peterson, age 26, Rochester, MN
- Ester Linda Peters, age 47, Rochester, MN
- Shayla Jean Peterson, age 23, Paynesville, MN
Vehicle 2: 2008 Ford Focus
- Sheila Eagle, age 54, Waukesha, WI
- Tamara Lynn Eagle, age 29, Waukesha, WI
- Nyobee Eagle Richardson, age 11, Waukesha, WI
The State Patrol says the Ford Focus was the vehicle heading the wrong way down the interstate. They're still investigating why.
The State Patrol says one of the vehicles started on fire after the crash.
Kevin Holz, a custodian at a rest area less than a mile from the crash site, saw the wreckage on his way into work.
"All that was left [of the car] was basically the back seat and the trunk," he said, "The front part of the car was flat all the way to the driver's seat, the roof was buckled, and then you could see the car. It just looked like flat metal laying there."
The State Patrol says this is the deadliest crash in Minnesota since 2010.
After being closed for a number of hours for accident reconstruction and cleanup, both directions of I-90 are back open.