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Nine people are hospitalized in 29-car pileup on Minnesota highway

Twenty-nine vehicles, including at least 15 semi-trucks, were involved in a fiery car collision on Thursday after a powerful snow squall engulfed a Minnesota highway. 

The accident took place just before 9am on Interstate 94 near Monticello – about 40mi northwest of Minneapolis – after a heavy band of snow significantly reduced visibility on the roads.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) said the initial crash was reported between Wright County Road 19 and County Road 18.

At least one semitrailer burst into flames, sending thick black smoke billowing into the air and forcing authorities to shut lanes in both directions.  

About 15 semi-trucks were involved in a 29-vehicle crash in Minnesota on Thursday after a snow squall engulfed Interstate 94

About 15 semi-trucks were involved in a 29-vehicle crash in Minnesota on Thursday after a snow squall engulfed Interstate 94 

The massive collision took place just before 9am between Wright County Road 19 and County Road 18. At least one semitrailer burst into flames, sending thick black smoke billowing into the air

The massive collision took place just before 9am between Wright County Road 19 and County Road 18. At least one semitrailer burst into flames, sending thick black smoke billowing into the air

The accident occurred on Interstate 94 near Monticello - about 40mi northwest of Minneapolis

The accident occurred on Interstate 94 near Monticello – about 40mi northwest of Minneapolis

The driver of the truck was not injured and was reported to be ‘OK’, Minnesota State Patrol Sergeant Jesse Grabow said on Twitter.   

Nine people were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening life injuries.

As of Thursday afternoon, westbound traffic on the I-94 at Highway 25 remained closed as authorities work to clean up burnt vehicles, tires and other debris. 

Eastbound traffic has since reopened, police said. 

Photos from the scene showed several burnt-out vehicles lining the icy roads covered in charred debris. 

Traffic cameras also showed dark plumes of smoke covering the air. 

Photos from the scene showed several burnt-out vehicles lining  icy roads covered in charred debris

Photos from the scene showed several burnt-out vehicles lining  icy roads covered in charred debris

As of Thursday afternoon, westbound traffic on the I-94 at Highway 25 remained closed as authorities work to clean up burnt vehicles, tires and other debris

As of Thursday afternoon, westbound traffic on the I-94 at Highway 25 remained closed as authorities work to clean up burnt vehicles, tires and other debris

At least one semitrailer burst into flames, sending thick black smoke billowing into the air and forcing authorities to shut lanes in both directions

Authorities were forced to shut lanes in both directions after several vehicles went up in flames

Authorities were forced to shut lanes in both directions after several vehicles went up in flames

Nine people were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening life injuries, Sergeant Jess Grabow said

Nine people were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening life injuries, Sergeant Jess Grabow said 

The accident remains under investigation, Grabow said. 

The horror crash came as the National Weather Service (NWS) issued a snow squall warning in the region.

‘A narrow band of heavy snow will impact the Twin Cities metro this morning. Conditions will rapidly deteriorate with visibility dropping to 1/4 mile or less in a matter of minutes,’ the NSW tweeted

‘Please exercise caution when traveling.’

While snow squalls are known to last less than an hour, they can produce dangerous, sudden white-out conditions and icy roads in a matter of minutes, according to the weather service.  

Burned-out vehicles remain at the scene of the multi-vehicle accident on the westbound lane of Interstate Highway 94 near Monticello

Burned-out vehicles remain at the scene of the multi-vehicle accident on the westbound lane of Interstate Highway 94 near Monticello

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