PLAINVILLE, CT (WFSB) – A person died in a fiery crash that closed a portion of Route 72 in Plainville overnight.

The eastbound side of the highway to Interstate 84 east was the portion that was closed. It has since reopened. 

"As soon as I came around the corner, I saw a row of state police cars," said Robert Giovannucci of Manchester.

State police confirmed the incident was deadly earlier Thursday morning.

Giovannucci passed its aftermath while driving on the westbound side of Route 72.

"And a stack of cars as far as I can see backed up coming in eastbound to 84," he said.

State police said only one vehicle was involved. 

They said their preliminary investigation showed the driver crashed into a guardrail and then a bridge abutment.

Video captured by a Department of Transportation highway camera showed smoke billowing from the car.

The fire was reported just before 3:15 a.m. Thursday. The highway was shut down for hours.

The victim has not been identified.

"Whenever you see a crash, all you can hope is everybody is alright, you know what I mean?" said Tom Byrne, who drives an Uber.

Byrne said he had to accordingly plan his routes on Thursday morning.

"I think I'll be staying away from that way," he said.

The investigation into exactly what happened continues.

"We won't be able to determine the reason for the crash or cause of death until an autopsy is completed," said Trooper Vincent Gogluicci, Connecticut State Police.

Anyone who may have seen what happened or with any information is asked to contact state police at 860-534-1000.

"If anyone was in the area, that may have seen the crash or a vehicle operating erratically, just in the 3 a.m. area, we'd like to hear from them so we can help piece this together," Gogluicci said.

For real-time traffic updates, check the Channel 3 traffic map here.

Copyright 2019 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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