UPDATE: Louisiana State Police Troop I have identified the victim who lost his life in the multiple-vehicle crash on Louisiana Highway 14 as 26-year-old Erin Matthew LaPoint of Lake Arthur.
Around 2:30 p.m. on October 6, 2022 Louisiana State Police, Troop I responded to the scene of a multiple-vehicle crash that took place west of W. Pirates Lane in Vermilion Parish.
According to authorities, the initial investigation by State Police revealed a farming operation was burning field edges near LA Hwy. 14 where an accumulation of smoke obscured the vision of drivers on the roadway.
It was discovered that two separate but related crashes occurred within a short time.
Due to the road blockage, a third crash took place involving the fatality.
Investigators determined the third crash occurred as LaPoint was traveling west on LA Hwy. 14 in a 2003 Ford Mustang when he rear-ended a 2022 Peterbilt Single Unit Delivery Tanker, which was stopped in the roadway due to the previous crashes.
Subsequently, LaPoint was rear-ended by a 1998 pickup, driven by Skyler Abshire of Gueydan.
LaPoint Mustang was crushed between the Peterbilt tanker and the pickup truck.
Lafayette State Police confirmed that LaPoint was unrestrained and suffered fatal injuries in which he was pronounced dead on the scene by the Vermilion Parish Coroner's Office.
The driver of the pickup was restrained and did not suffer any injuries.
Officials say standard toxicology samples were obtained from LaPoint for analysis, as well as breath samples from the drivers of the pickup truck and the Peterbilt.
Both samples from the drivers of the pickup truck and the Peterbilt showed no alcohol present and neither drivers showed signs of impairment.
According to Louisiana State Police Troop I, the crash remains under investigation.
Louisiana State Troopers remind motorists that making good choices while in motor vehicles such as always ensuring every occupant is properly restrained, not driving impaired, and not being distracted behind the wheel can often mean the difference between life and death.
Troop I has investigated 39 fatal crashes resulting in 44 deaths in 2022.