A woman was killed Tuesday night in a three-car crash on the southbound 405 Freeway just north of Santa Monica Boulevard.
The collision was reported at 8:33 p.m., snarling traffic as far north as Sunset Boulevard in Brentwood.
"The victim is described as a 56-year-old black woman, but I don't know which car she was in," California Highway Patrol Officer Patrick Kimball told City News Service. The victim's name was withheld pending notification of next of kin.
The victim was dead by the time highway patrol officers arrived six minutes later. Though each of the cars was damaged, no one else was injured, according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Matt Spence.
A red Volvo, a silver sedan and a black SUV were involved. Its hood crunched in, the SUV landed several yards to south. Red flares diverted traffic away from the mangled cars and into the fast lane. Shards from the vehicles were strewn about.
Heavy traffic on the Wilshire Boulevard on-ramp had delayed the arrival of a tow truck, according to CHP radio reports.
Except for the fast lane, a SigAlert was issued for an undetermined amount of time for all southbound traffic as emergency personnel cleared the wreckage and collected evidence. Traffic finally started to ease up after midnight. The cars were removed from the freeway by 12:50 a.m., when the SigAlert was lifted.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation, Kimball said.
More information will be posted as it becomes available.
— City News Service contributed to this report.