BUTLER COUNTY (KDKA) – Icy roads led to two accidents involving tractor trailers along Interstate 79.
Around 5:15 a.m., a tractor trailer overturned in the southbound lanes of I-79, between Warrendale and Wexford.
KDKA’s John Shumway Reports:
The tractor trailer overturned and partially rolled into the northbound lanes, but officials say the guardrail kept the accident from being worse.
“It completely stopped the truck from traveling into the opposite lanes,” said PennDOT’s Dan Cessna, “and in the past, we’ve had a number of major facilities in that area where the vehicles weren’t stopped prior to the railings being installed.”
Backups stretched for miles.
There’s no word on the driver’s condition.
Emergency responders said the icy conditions made it difficult to get to the scene, with some saying their vehicles slid through the intersections while en route.
“You could hardly stand on 79, just to give you an idea, and the people that were driving on that road this morning for some reason acted like they had no clue,” said Chief Phil MacMillan, of the Marshall Township VFD.
Franklin Park firefighters arriving at the scene to block off a lane got rear ended in the process.
“I said to Ellsworth, we are going to get hit from behind like right now, and a car came up and hit us from behind,” said Franklin Park VFD Capt. Bill Chicots. “Pretty violent, it moved the truck about five feet.”
Fortunately, no one was hurt but the car and the fire truck are out of commission.
In Oakland, there was no cable barrier on the bridge on Baum Boulevard, where a head-on crash ended up damaging four cars, and closing the road for more than an hour.
Two people had to be transported to the hospital with significant injuries.
KDKA’s Rick Dayton Reports:
Another vehicle overturned Friday morning on Babcock Boulevard, between Browns Lane and Chapel Drive, which is currently closed off.
“It’s been a little busier than a typical winter day here,” said Steve Popovich with AAA. “We have seen most of that action in our northern cities.”
Late Thursday night, another tractor trailer crashed with a truck due to icy conditions.
It happened on northbound I-79 north of Route 422.
Officials say at least two other cars had slid off the road near the same area.
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