Authorities were compelled to fully close a major highway, Interstate 40, in Durham, North Carolina following a massive crash involving 32 cars on Tuesday evening.
The accident occurred near 751, just before the Streets at Southpoint shopping mall exit, triggering debris that led to the road’s shutdown. Estimated hours of effort are projected for the road to reopen.
Around 5:40 pm, the collision was reported, resulting in the complete closure of westbound traffic on Interstate 40. Specifics about casualties from the multi-car accident have not been disclosed yet.
Local authorities strongly advise all drivers to avoid the area entirely due to the ongoing situation.
Media images captured the aftermath, including a striking scene where two cars were wedged under a trailer. Adjacent to this incident were 11 vehicles involved in a chain-reaction collision.
Durham police confirmed that 32 vehicles were implicated an hour after the incident was reported, leading to the continued closure of Interstate 40 West.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) directed drivers to use the Exit 274 off-ramp, then re-access I-40 West through the on-ramp, as the highway would likely remain obstructed until around 9 pm.
The chain collision will be under investigation by the Durham Police Department, with support from the North Carolina State Highway Patrol.
According to local outlet, 18 out of the 32 vehicles’ drivers or passengers involved did not sustain serious injuries.
One individual named Kelly, who was part of the crash, shared her experience, stating, “there’s glass on my belongings on the inside [of my car], so that’s what I was checking out.” Despite her leg swelling and bruising, she expressed gratitude for avoiding severe harm.