TSU, Japan Kyodo Three people were killed and several others injured after a five-vehicle multi-lane accident on a central Japan expressway in the early hours of Monday, police said.
Of the eight people who were taken to the hospital, Shinji Kakuta, 53, who was traveling in a midsize truck, Hiroaki Tsuzuki, 86, and his wife Mihoko, 83, both of whom were in a passenger vehicle, died in Higashi-Meihan Expressway in Kameyama, Mie Prefecture.
Four others were injured and a woman in her 20s driving a minivan, who was driving a minivan, was unconscious and in critical condition, police said.
The minivan and midsize truck collided just before a larger truck hit them and spilled its load of plastic bottles onto the road, police said. In the lane heading the other direction, two passenger cars crashed, including one in which the killed couple was traveling.
A guardrail separating the lanes was badly damaged, while workers could be seen cleaning up plastic bottles scattered across the road.