Denton police

This story was updated at 4:45 p.m.

Update: Laura M. Bickham, 51, of Denton was identified as the person who was killed in Thursday's crash.

One person was killed Thursday afternoon in a vehicle crash on East University Drive, bringing the total number of traffic deaths on Denton roads to four in less than a week.

Denton police said one person was killed and two others were injured just before 1:30 p.m. Thursday in a “multiple vehicle wreck” between Mayhill and Geesling roads on University (U.S. Highway 380).

A fiery crash that resulted in three deaths on Friday afternoon on Interstate 35W was still under investigation by police, a department spokeswoman said Thursday. Police said initially the crash involved two semis and four passenger cars that resulted in an explosion.

So far in 2019, 13 people have been killed on Denton roads, the police department said after the crash Thursday. Crash data from the Texas Department of Transportation show there were 13 fatal crashes in Denton in 2018.

In Thursday’s crash, the identity of the killed driver was not immediately released as authorities worked to notify next of kin. By Friday morning, the Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office listed Laura M. Bickham, 51, of Denton as the victim.

The crash on Friday killed two people from Fort Worth and one person from Denton. Jennifer Ferguson, 30, and Paul Sauchs, 59, both of Fort Worth and Ann Cole, 63, of Denton were identified by the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office as the victims.

Eastbound lanes in the crash area Thursday were closed while drivers traveling westbound were diverted to Geesling Road toward Mingo Road, Denton police said in a post on Twitter. A spokeswoman said at about 4:15 p.m. the disruption would last hours as the crash investigation continued. Police said that the westbound lanes were open by 5:15 p.m.

DALTON LAFERNEY can be reached at 940-566-6882 and via Twitter at @daltonlaferney.

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