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UPDATED: EB I-70 Western Washington County: One Lane Now Open

September 30th, 2016 by WCBC Radio

UPDATED:  10:30 AM – Maryland State Police in LaVale tell us that they have been informed that one lane of I 70 in the affected area is now open to traffic.  There are still delays and backups, so if you can detour around that area, it would be in your interest to do so.

(HANCOCK, MD) — Maryland State Police have had to close eastbound I-70 from the Pennsylvania line to the area of Hancock in western Washington County due to two serious crashes that occurred early this morning, one of which is a confirmed fatality. 

The first crash occurred shortly before 2:30 a.m. today on eastbound I-70 near Hancock.  The preliminary investigation indicates a car stopped for an unknown reason in the roadway and was struck from behind by a tractor trailer.  The driver of the car got out and was on foot when he was struck by a second tractor trailer.  He has been pronounced dead at the scene. 

About 20 minutes later, as traffic backed up behind the first crash scene, a second crash occurred about one mile west of the first.  The preliminary investigation indicates rear-ended a stopped tractor trailer, causing a fire in the striking vehicle.  The driver of the vehicle that caught fire is said to have critical injuries. 

Troopers report heavy rain in the area with reduced visibility at the time of the crashes.  Rain continues in the area at this time.

Due to the two crash scenes, Maryland State Police have had to close eastbound I-70 back to the Pennsylvania line.  Eastbound I-70 traffic is said to be backing up well into PA.

Eastbound I-70 from the PA line past Hancock is expected to be closed for at least several hours.  Those planning to travel that route this morning should delay travel or take an alternate route.

MDOT State Highway Administration CHART personnel are on the scene coordinating the detour of traffic around the area.  Drivers should check or dial 511 for the latest traffic and detour information. 

State Police crash re-constructionists are on the scene conducting both investigations.  More detailed information will be provided later today after it is available and families have been notified.

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