UPATE 2:50 p.m.: State Police have released the identity of the man killed in the tractor-trailer crash on I-81 this morning in Botetourt County.
Police are saying Michael Lenden Kreul of Lexington died in the crash.
UPDATE 1:07 p.m.: Botetourt County traffic is back to normal after crews cleared the scene of Wednesday’s fatal tractor-trailer crash and reopened I-81 South. Meanwhile, Virginia State Police Sgt. Richard Garletts shared additional details about the crash with WFXR News.
According to Garletts the driver of the first tractor-trailer involved in the crash had intentionally pulled over and parked on the side of the road at mile marker 158 on I-81 South in order to sleep, which is illegal.
While federal law reportedly requires commercial drivers to pull over and rest once they drive a certain number of hours, they are supposed to pull into a designated truck stop rather than the side of the highway.
Garletts says the tractor-trailer driver received four tickets following the crash for reasons such as parking along I-81 to sleep illegally and not leaving fluorescent markers around the vehicle to warn other drivers of the truck’s location.
This is the second fatality in that area resulting from similar circumstances, according to Garletts.
UPDATE 11 a.m.: VDOT says all lanes are back open at mile marker 158 on I-81 South following Wednesday morning’s fatal tractor-trailer crash.
However, Botetourt County motorists can still expect more than two miles of delays, according to VDOT.
UPDATE 9:18 a.m.: Virginia State Police announced the pickup truck driver who was seriously injured in Wednesday morning’s tractor-trailer crash in Botetourt County later died in the hospital.
According to police, the crash — which involved two tractor-trailers and a pickup truck — took place at 5:18 a.m. Wednesday along I-81 South in Botetourt County.
Authorities say the pickup truck struck a tractor-trailer that was illegally parked on the right side of the road, but after the pickup truck came to rest in the roadway, another tractor-trailer heading south on I-81 hit the pickup truck.
The pickup truck driver was reportedly transported to Roanoke Memorial Hospital, where police say he later died. State troopers are currently working to notify the driver’s next of kin.
In the meantime, I-81 South is blocked at mile marker 58 until crews remove the vehicles, according to Virginia State Police.
VDOT says all traffic will be detoured off at Exit 162, onto U.S. Route 11 South, onto Route 460 West and Brughs Mill Road, and back onto I-81 South at mile marker 156. However, officials say there is three miles of congestion from the detour site, and the on-ramp for Exit 162 is closed at this time.
This crash is still under investigation by Virginia State Police.
UPDATE 7:27 a.m.: Botetourt County traffic is still backed up for two miles from the scene of a tractor-trailer crash at mile marker 158 along I-81 South, but VDOT is detouring motorists off I-81 to prevent the backup from getting worse.
VDOT says all traffic will be detoured off at Exit 162, onto U.S. Route 11 South, onto Route 460 West and Brughs Mill Road, and back onto I-81 South at mile marker 156.
Meanwhile, Troutville Volunteer Fire Department shared additional pictures of the crash:
UPDATE 6:35 a.m.: According to VDOT, the Botetourt County backup is now approximately two miles following the closure of I-81 South at mile marker 158 due to a multi-vehicle crash involving a tractor-trailer that left one person seriously injured.
UPDATE 6:19 a.m.: The Troutville Volunteer Fire Department confirmed to WFXR News one person sustained serious injuries after being trapped in Wednesday morning’s tractor-trailer crash that is backing up Botetourt County traffic along I-81 South.
The department says the crash involved one tractor-trailer and one passenger vehicle. Within 10 minutes of arriving on scene, fire officials say crews pulled the trapped person out of the vehicle.
That person was brought to Roanoke Memorial with serious injuries, according to the department.
According to officials, crews are currently dealing with a hazmat situation because the tractor-trailer was leaking diesel fuel.
Meanwhile, VDOT says traffic is already backed up for approximately a mile in Botetourt County due to the closure of all southbound lanes at mile marker 158 on I-81.
BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — A tractor-trailer crash with entrapment has shut down I-81 South in Botetourt County Wednesday morning, according to officials.
According to the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), all southbound lanes are closed at mile marker 158 on I-81 due to the crash.
The Troutville Volunteer Fire Department says at least one person is trapped in the crash.
There is no word on the number of vehicles or injured parties involved at this time.
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