Ice causes huge crash in the US

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A surprise pre-dawn coating of ice from freezing rain has sent cars and trucks sliding and led to a pile up of at least 31 vehicles on a major highway in the US Midwest.

It took nearly five hours to clear an interstate highway in St. Louis, Missouri following a series of accidents in the area.

The worst took place in the east bound lanes very early in the morning.

Police said one person was critically injured and another 20 suffered minor injuries.

At least one tractor-trailer was involved.

The National Weather Service said sleet and freezing rain began moving through the area which caused dangerous driving conditions.