PHOTOS: Crash blocks I-44 near Strafford

STRAFFORD, Mo. A crash between three 18-wheelers and a pickup blocked both lanes of Interstate 44 at Strafford.

It happened just after 8 a.m. Thursday. The Missouri State Highway Patrol reports the incident involved two separate crashes. The first happened between a couple of passenger cars at mile marker 88. A few moments later, the three semis collided. One of them flipped over onto a pickup truck, and was sprawled across the highway. Troopers closed the highway to traffic in both directions. MoDOT predicts the highway will be closed until mid afternoon.

Troopers say one person was killed in the crashes. The name of the victim has not been released.

All traffic must leave the interstate at or before exit 96.

If taking Exit 96, proceed south on Mo. Route B to Route AD West to Mo 125 South for a very short time to Route D West to US 65 North to I-44 West.

MoDot said a smarter route for those who are now far to the east would be to take Exit 186 at Rolla, Mo., and follow US 63 South to US 60 West to I-44 West.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol was also working a separate crash about a mile west of that scene that had blocked one lane of traffic.