All lanes had reopened early Thursday afternoon after a multivehicle crash shut down both directions of the 60 Freeway in South El Monte, leaving a 5-year-old girl dead and at least 13 others injured.
Nine vehicles, including two big rigs and a tanker truck, were involved in a crash around 5:45 a.m. on the eastbound 60 Freeway near the Santa Anita Avenue off-ramp.
Fourteen people were injured in the crash; four were critically injured and 10 sustained minor to moderate injuries, a California Highway Patrol officer said.
A 5-year-old girl died at Beverly Hospital in Montebello at 6:37 a.m., according to the coroner’s office. She was in traumatic full arrest with multiple fatal injuries, a doctor at the hospital said.
She was identified as Maydelin Salas of South El Monte, according to Lt. David Smith of the Los Angeles County coroner’s office.
At least two vehicles became engulfed in flames and the tanker truck, which was carrying milk, overturned, aerial video showed. The tanker’s driver was among those hospitalized.
Milk and diesel fuel leaked from the tanker truck onto the westbound side of the 60 Freeway, causing it to close.
The crash caused a SigAlert and all lanes heading both directions were shutdown. Three westbound lanes had reopened by 10:30 a.m., and eastbound lanes began to reopen about 11 a.m., according to CHP.
The SigAlert was cancelled and traffic was moving in all lanes in both directions by about 12:30 p.m.
An unexplained slowdown on the eastbound side of the freeway may have caused the crash, according to a preliminary investigation.
The tanker approached slowing traffic and collided with vehicles, ending up on the center divider, according to Edgar Figueroa of the CHP.