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UPDATE: PA Turnpike WB reopened between Morgantown and Reading

Updated: Thursday, December 26 2013, 06:07 PM CST
(PHOTO COURTESY: CHAD BLIMLINE/WFMZ)
(Updated: December 26, 5:45 p.m.)

The Pennsylvania Turnpike reopened its westbound lanes between the Morgantown and Reading Exits just after 515 p.m., after being shut down for most of the day on Thursday.

A spokesperson says there were actually four different crash sites between those two interchanges that occurred just after 9 a.m. which is when Central Pa. got a burst of snowfall.

The four crashes involved an estimated 35 vehicles and were scattered between mile markers 287.5 and 290.2.

Steve Koffel of Lansdale says it happened in a flash, saying that he had heard there was trouble up ahead but by the time he got on the radio of his big rig, all he saw was taillights. The impact damaged his front and back ends.

He says after he hit the car in front of him he kept hearing one car after another hit others behind him.

"I sat there for at least two or three minutes and it was boom boom people behind running into each other," Koffel explained. 

Preliminary reports from police say 9 or 10 people were hurt. Steve was relieved that the driver of the car that hit his trailer didn't get hurt despite hitting the corner edge of his trailer bed.

"He's lucky I looked at him do you know who was driving this car he said, I was, and I said you need to thank God," Koffel said.

For hours --- wreckers pulled the crippled vehicles off the turnpike, as other traffic was diverted through Lancaster County. That made for very long holiday travel for many people trying to get home or head to another family gathering.
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The Pennsylvania Turnpike is closed westbound between Morgantown and Reading due to accidents.

For alternate routes, take State Route 10 South (1 mile) to State Route 23 West (8 miles) to US Route 322 West (8 miles) to Route 222 North (5 miles).  Re-enter the Pennsylvania Turnpike at the Reading Interchange (286/old 21).

Turnpike officials tell us they expect to reopen the road within the next 2 hours. There were 4 different accidents in the area, involving 35 cars.

No serious injuries were reported. UPDATE: PA Turnpike WB reopened between Morgantown and Reading


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