Six students and a faculty member from Missouri Southern State University were among those injured in an eight-vehicle crash Tuesday evening near Hamel, Ill., approximately 30 miles from St. Louis.

According to a report from the Illinois State Police, the accident occurred at 6:14 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 21, when a semitrailer traveling southbound on Interstate 55 struck seven vehicles traveling at highway speed. The driver and passenger of one of the vehicles were killed, while 12 others sustained injuries and were transported to area hospitals.

Two of the 12 sustained life-threatening injuries, the report stated.

The van from Missouri Southern was returning from the Model United Nations Conference in Chicago, Ill.

The faculty member and five of the students suffered non-life-threatening injuries, while the sixth student remains in critical condition.

“This was a tragic accident and we are continuing to monitor the situation closely,” said Dr. Alan Marble, president of Missouri Southern. “We have reached out to the students and their families to offer whatever support we can provide.”