Three people are dead in two separate vehicle collisions that happened about an hour apart on I-25, in the Wheatland area.

The first happened at around 8pm on Tuesday, September 23rd, about 16 miles north of Wheatland.

The Wyoming Highway Patrol says 26-year old Ryan Holzapfel of Cheyenne was traveling north on I-25 in the construction zone, when for unknown reasons, the vehicle he was driving hit a guardrail.

Holzapfel's vehicle then entered the southbound lane, where he hit another vehicle, driven by 28-year old Trustin Vrtatko of Cheyenne, who was going in the other direction.

Holzapfel and his front seat passenger, later identified as 30-year old Justin Kinzler of Fargo, North Dakota, were both buckled in, but sustained fatal injuries from the crash.

Vrtatko was uninjured, and the freeway had to be closed for a time, so that emergency crews could clean up the mess.

The construction zone in that area of I-25, is one lane of traffic in both directions, with northbound traffic, traveling in one of the two southbound lanes.

The second fatal wreck happened about one hour later on I-25, at the northbound road closure gate, about two miles north of Wheatland.

The Patrol says 67-year old Arthur Osburn of Guernsey, was traveling south on the freeway, when he hit a semi, driven by 42-year old Christopher Caroselli of Texas.

Caroselli was making a U-turn into the southbound lane because the northbound gate was closed, due to the earlier wreck.

Caroselli's semi was taking up both southbound lanes during the U-turn, when it was hit by Osburn, who sustained fatal injuries, as a result.

The Patrol adds that Osburn was not buckled in at the time of the collision.

Failure to yield to oncoming traffic on the part of Caroselli, and driver inattention on the part of Osburn, is being investigated as possible contributing factors in the collision.