One person is dead and eight are injured in multi-car crash on Interstate 5 near Arlington.

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One person is dead and eight are injured in multi-car crash on Interstate 5 near Arlington.

At about 1:28 p.m., a car traveling south on I-5 apparently went across the median and slammed into a pickup and an sport-utility vehicle traveling north. A passenger in one of the cars heading north died.

Two other people were airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, said State Patrol Trooper Lance Ramsay.

Several cars burst into flames. A semi-truck driver who stopped near the crash managed to tow a car away from the fire, said Ramsay.

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“This is the worst crash I’ve seen in 13 years,” said Ramsay.

Five additional motorists were taken to local hospitals, said Nathan Trauernicht, a spokesman for the Marysville Fire District.

Trauernicht said that as of 2:30 p.m., two cars were still smoldering.

Northbound I-5 traffic was shut down from 116th Street in Marysville to the crash site.

“It’s pretty unbelievable. I don’t know I’ve seen a car accident this bad,” said Trauernicht. “Two vehicles basically on fire a Chevy suburban missing it’s front end and with heavy damage.”

Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or jensullivan@seattletimes.com