Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Four People Killed in Separate Crashes on Interstate 78 Late Tuesday

The Pennsylvania State Police at Hamburg has released information on two separate crashes that killed four people on Interstate 78 in Berks County late Tuesday.
The first crash occurred around 8:20pm, in the Eastbound lanes near mile marker 27.4 in Tilden Township.

Troopers say the crash occurred as Brenda Brownfield, 69 from Georgia was driving an empty new school bus (delivering to Canada) and was traveling in the right lane approaching stopped traffic. The traffic was reportedly stopped due to a left lane closure in a work zone at mile marker 28. Brownfield failed to see that traffic was stopped and struck the rear end of a Chevrolet Cruze being driven by a 20 year male.

The bus continued with the Cruze lodged underneath its front end and struck the rear end of a Nissan Xterra being driven by Warren Jackson, 58, of New Jersey.  Jackson's vehicle was then pushed into the rear end of a tractor trailer being driven by Jaspreet Chahal, 32, of Pennsylvania.

The 20 year old driver of the Cruze and a front seat passenger in the Xterra were pronounced dead at the scene by the Berks County Coroner.  Their identities were not released.

The crash is still under investigation and there has been no word if charges will be filed.

The second crash occurred approximately 2 hours later and 10 miles west at mile marker 18.1 on Eastbound Interstate 78.

Troopers say the crash occurred as traffic was being detoured off the Interstate at Exit 19 (Strausstown) due to the first crash.

A 64 year old male from New Florence, PA was driving a tractor trailer and failed to slow down for the stopped traffic and rear ended a van being driven by a 53 year old male from Inman, South Carolina.  This forced the van to impact a sedan being driven by a 40 year old female from Reading who was pushed into a SUV being driven by a 54 year old male from Williamsport.  

The SUV was was then pushed into a 5th vehicle, a tractor trailer being driven by a 46 year old from Orlando, FL.

A 24 year old female rear passenger seat passenger in the Sedan (3rd vehicle struck), and the driver of the SUV were pronounced dead at the scene by the Berks County Coroner.

The Pennsylvania State Police CARS UNIT and Forensics Services Unit responded to both incidents to investigate.

Police are asking anyone that may have information or witnessed the crash to call the Hamburg Barracks at (610) 562-6885.

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