Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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November 16, 2010

UPDATE: 50 vehicles involved in I-77 pileup; 20 injured, 2 dead

 The southbound lanes of Interstate 77 will remain closed until approximately 9 p.m. Tuesday evening after a series of crashes involving dozens of vehicles have left at least two dead, according to the Virginia State Police.

Southbound I-77 traffic is and will continue to be diverted at the I-77/I-81 interchange in Wytheville, Va. With approximately 50 vehicles involved in the crashes between the 4 and 7 mile markers, near the Fancy Gap area of Carroll County, officials say it is still too dangerous to re-open even one lane to through traffic. Half of the vehicles involved were commercial motor vehicles. A total of 20 people were injured, four of those being critical.

Vehicles are literally stacked on top of one another. Tractor-trailers are jackknifed and/or overturned onto their sides. There are dozens of troopers, emergency workers and wrecker operators rapidly working to remove these vehicles to clear the roadway.

The traffic diversion is set up at the I-77/I-81 interchange in Wytheville to prevent significant backups on both interstates as we head into the evening hours.

At 4:57 p.m., Virginia State Police responded to a crash with injuries in the northbound lanes of I-77 at the 7 mile marker in the Fancy Gap area. As troopers assess this latest crash, northbound traffic on I-77 is being stopped at Exit 1 – just inside the Virginia line. The northbound crash involves at least two tractor-trailers. Virginia State Police are coordinating with North Carolina law enforcement and transportation officials to coordinate this traffic situation.

 

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