10 Injured in Virginia Interstate Pileup

Blinding rain and speed are factors in I-81 crashes

 

 
 
 

| Monday, August 12, 2013


LEXINGTON, Va. (AP) — A two-car accident on Interstate 81 in central Virginia combined with blinding rain and speed as factors in a weekend pileup of 41 cars, trucks and other vehicles that injured 10 people, state police said.

Some tractor-trailer trucks from Sunday's pileup near Lexington remained overturned by the roadside Monday along with a crumpled camper, said State police Sgt. A.D. Nicely. Crews were planning to try to remove remaining vehicles safely once traffic eased up later in the day.

Nicely said witnesses and victims interviewed by police indicated a two-car accident preceded the pileup. One car came to rest in the median, partially blocking one lane while the other vehicle partly blocked another lane, both in the same direction, according to police.

Then a "torrential downpour" began as cars were trying to thread between the two cars, Nicely said. Witnesses reported blinding rain had limited visibility to 20 feet or less. He noted that speed also is believed to have been a factor.

"Everything came together there at one time," he said.

In all, six tractor-trailers were involved in the pileup involving the other vehicles and all southbound lanes were closed for hours. Traffic backed up for five miles before the interstate fully reopened late Sunday night.

None of the injuries was life-threatening, though two of the 10 injured were airlifted to hospitals, Nicely said.

The officer said some truck drivers veered off the road and overturned to avoid hitting other vehicles, likely saving lives.

"I believe that decision on their behalf saved us a lot more injuries or fatalities," Nicely added. "You don't know what would have happened when you start having 80,000-pound vehicles slamming into 2,000-pound vehicles."

Interstate 81 is a heavily used trucking route that, in Virginia, stretches from Bristol in the southwest part of the state to Winchester in the northwest part of the state. Much of the interstate in Virginia runs along the Appalachian Mountains chain.

Shay and Danielle Tippens of North Carolina told WSET-TV that their car was hit by a tractor-trailer, but they weren't hurt.

"When I got out, and I looked behind us, I was just like 'Oh my God.' Everything that happened up here happened behind us," Danielle Tippens said. "It could've been so much worse."

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

Mobile Category: 
News


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, MVA, MCI, auto extrication

 
What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS





 

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Innovation & Progress

Follow in the footsteps of these inspirational leaders of EMS.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Three Kentucky Firefighters Injured in Ice Bucket Challenge

Campbellsville tower ladder comes in contact with power lines.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

NAEMT: Transforming EMS

A look inside at the Mobile Healthcare Paramedic system.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Austin-Travis County Community Health Paramedic Program

Overview of program provides operation and referral details.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Flight Paramedic’s Perfect Weekend

Carilion Lifeguard Flight Paramedic shares what would make his perfect weekend.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Numerous Rescues during Arizona Flooding

Severe flooding across the region prompted several rescues.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Colorado Hiker Rescue

Injured hiker spent three hours in a crevice.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Airlift at Swiss Train Derailment

Helicopters used to help reach the injured.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >