DUBLIN, Georgia (41NBC) - Four people are now confirmed dead after a tanker exploded in Laurens County that's according to Bibb County Coroner Leon Jones.
The call came in at 8:12 this morning about the accident on the westbound side of I-16 between exits 35 and 36.
According to the Laurens County Emergency 911 Center multiple cars were involved in the accident. Nine injured victims were taken to Fariview Park Hospital in Dublin.
Troopers at the scene advise this incident will be four separate crashes involving a total of 27 vehicles, including 7 commercial vehicles. One of the vehicles was an empty tanker that caught fire.
Firefighters are on the scene as well as law enforcement officials from Bleckley, Laurens, and Twiggs County and the Georgia State Patrol. GSP is handling the investigation. Investigators still don't know the cause of the wrecks.
Drivers are advised to avoid the area as I-16 may not reopen until later tthis afternoon. Eastbound I-16 traffic is being detoured at exit 32. Westbound traffic is being detoured at exit 39.
UPDATE as of 12:30 pm: The Eastbound right lane of I-16 will open up shortly. Most of the vehicles have been removed, but I-16 Westbound will stay closed for at least 2 more hours.
More than 100 first responders from 3 different counties (Bleckley, Twiggs and Laurens) as well as GSP are still working the scene.
Check back with 41NBC for more on this story throughout the day.