Transportation
12:45 pm
Thu January 31, 2013

'Massive crash' on I-75 this morning after white out conditions

Update 4:22 p.m.

Traffic is flowing again on Interstate 75 near Detroit in both directions. Crews have cleared the roads after white out conditions led to multiple collisions along the interstate. At least three people were killed.  

1:53 p.m.

Traffic is flowing again on northbound Interstate 75 while authorities clear the remaining vehicles that crashed in a sudden snow squall on the south side of the expressway and claimed at least three lives.

At least half a dozen semi-trucks along with other damaged vehicles are still waiting to be moved. Crews are working to clean up a spill of diesel fuel from the crash.

 State police say the south side of I-75 could be cleared by the afternoon rush hour.

1:04 p.m.

As is the nature of these events, we're getting revised numbers from the Michigan State Police on the number killed in the accident. They now say three people have died, including two children.

12:00 p.m.

Southbound I-75 near Detroit could be closed for some time today. WDIV-TV is reporting clean-up of the crash will take 12-16 hours.

The Detroit Free Press has this first hand account from a driver caught in the crash:

11:41 a.m.

We're hearing the following information on the crash this morning:

  • Four  Three deaths are reported and 15 to 20 people have been transported to local hospitals. No one remains trapped in damaged vehicles.
  • There were 15 vehicles involved in accidents spread out over a mile stretch. The Michigan State Police spokesman said accidents occurred in 'pockets.' He blamed white out conditions for vehicles failing to stop in time.
  • Dozens of undamaged vehicles remain in the accident zone. Those vehicles will be moved as the accident scenes are cleared.

You can watch live coverage of the crash scene from WDIV-TV.

11:07 a.m.

The Detroit News reports the massive pileup has closed southbound I-75 in Detroit and that emergency responders are on the scene.

More from the Detroit News:

The accident scene is reportedly from Springwells to Schaeffer Highway. Emergency crews are evaluating the scene for a potential fuel spill.

Preliminary reports suggest the crash is fatal. Michigan State Police, EMS and the Detroit Fire Department are on the scene. A warming bus also has been requested.

"What we have heard so far is an unconfirmed report that there was a crash shortly after 9 a.m., and that there were chain reaction crashes after that," said Michigan Department of Transportation spokesman Rob Morosi. "Multiple police, fire and EMS responders are making their way to the scene. We are doing everything we can to help them reach the crash site."

10:53 a.m.

WDIV-TV is reporting on a crash along I-75 in Detroit this morning. The Detroit News tweets the crash and back-up is over a mile long.

A massive crash involving more than a dozen cars has closed portions of I-75 in Detroit.

The northbound lanes are closed at Schaefer.
The southbound lanes are closed at Springwells.

Local 4 spoke with several drivers at the scene who were able to get out of their cars safely and get off the interstate. They said white-out weather conditions made it very hard to see and contributed to the chain-reaction crash.

WDIV has pictures of the pile up here.

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