I-24 bridge back open after crash involving semi - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

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I-24 bridge back open after crash involving semi

(Source: McCracken County Sheriff's Department) (Source: McCracken County Sheriff's Department)
(Source: McCracken County Sheriff's Department) (Source: McCracken County Sheriff's Department)
PADUCAH, KY (KFVS) -

All lanes of the Interstate 24 Ohio River Bridge at Paducah are now open after a multi-vehicle accident including at least one semi tractor trailer near the mid-point of the bridge.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet reported the accident was cleared and traffic is moving smoothly as of 11:30 a.m.

The McCracken County Sheriff's Department says the accident happened around 10:00 p.m. when a semi hit a car that had broken down on the bridge.

The sheriff's department reports  23-year-old old Jacob McCabe, of Ozark, Il., and his passenger 24-year-old Corey Patton, of Grantsburg, Il., were traveling west bound on the I-24 Bridge when their 1997 Chevrolet Blazer experienced mechanical problems and stalled. 

McCabe and Patton reportedly exited the vehicle and began running east bound into oncoming traffic in an attempt to get away from their stationary vehicle because they feared they would be hit by a car if they stayed within it.

The sheriff's department reports moments later, 25-year-old Singh Onkar, of Shawnee, Ks., who was traveling west bound on the I-24 bridge in his company’s 2016 Hyundai tractor trailer, towards McCabe’s stalled vehicle that was in the slow lane with its flashers on. 

Onkar told the sheriff's department that he attempted to change lanes. However, he said due to an unknown vehicle directly to his left in the fast lane he was unable to move over and crashed into the rear of the McCabe's unoccupied vehicle.

The sheriff's department reports the force of the collision caused severe damage to McCabe’s vehicle, as well as the tractor trailer, knocking one of its fuel tanks loose from its mounting brackets.

According to the sheriff's department, an unknown amount of fuel was spilled on the surface of the bridge but, was quickly contained by emergency crews.

Both East and West bound lanes were closed for approximately one hour and forty five minutes to allow emergency crews to clear the wreckage and the investigate what happened.

The Illinois Dept of Transportation in case the bridge was damaged, however, initial reports show there was no structural damage.

Both lanes of the US 45 Ohio River "Brookport" Bridge were also closed for a time complicating issues on the I-24 Ohio River Bridge at Paducah.

According to the transportation cabinet, two semi trucks tried to cross the Brookport Bridge and had to back off the bridge.This has created gridlock on the passenger vehicle detour for the I-24 incident. The KYTC reports no vehicles over 8 ft. wide are allowed on the Brookport Bridge, which makes most truck traffic illegal.

Both Illinois and Kentucky emergency crews responded to the scene. 

The sheriff's department reports no one was hurt in the accident.

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