Police said four vehicles were involved in the smash on the borthbound carriageway near junction 38 in West Yorkshire, on Wednesday evening.
They included a white van, a green Honda Civic, a black Vauxhall Astra and a yellow Honda Civic.
The driver and passenger of one vehicle, who are yet to be named, were trapped.
The passenger, a man from Sheffield, was airlifted to Leeds General Infirmary with serious injuries but died.
The driver remains in a serious but stable condition in Pinderfields Hospital.
Police are appealing for any witnesses who saw the vehicles immediately before the incident to come forward.
The southbound carriageway was closed for an hour but the northbound carriageway was closed for nine hours.
Any witnesses are asked to contact the police Major Collision Enquiry Team on 01924 293047.