Wreck Involving Semi Truck Leaves I-80 a Mess Near Laramie [Update]
We have more information on the accident that partially close I-80 last night just east of the Grand Avenue exit. Lieutenant Tom Pritchard of the Wyoming Highway Patrol informed us this morning that yesterday's wreck involved three vehicles; a truck pulling a trailer with several campers, a semi hauling a cattle trailer and a wrecker. Tom told us that the accident occurred yesterday evening right at the road closure gates heading up towards the summit. The truck hauling camper trailers had been traveling eastbound and was waiting in the interstate cross-over that traffic normally uses when I-80 east out of Laramie closes. The truck's trailer was apparently overhanging into eastbound lanes and was crashed into by a semi hauling a cattle trailer who could not avoid the collision. This crash sent parts of camper trailers flying into the westbound lanes and are most of what you can make out in the pictures above. When the semi truck made impact, its cattle trailer then slid into a town truck that was stopped waiting at the road closure gates on the side of the road.
Tom Pritchard did not believe that the wreck closed the whole interstate but was unsure since he was not on the scene. When we arrived on the scene, at least three tow trucks and a snow plow were attempting to clear the interstate, which was a mess with truck and camper parts scattered everywhere; one lane in each direction was closed at that time.
This is yet another example of why it is so dangerous to use the cross-overs on the interstates. It is in fact illegal to use them. This wreck comes within less than a month of the last semi truck accident we covered on I-80 under the 15th street bridge when an SUV hit it brakes trying to use a different cross-over in the middle of the interstate. We stressed this at the end of our last report as well, but Tom Pritchard said that traffic should use only interstate exits to turn around. It might seem like a time saver to use these cross-overs but clearly it is pretty dangerous. Luckily no on was seriously injured in last night's accident.