Black ice shuts down several interstates

Interstates shutdown due to black ice

LENOX TOWNSHIP, SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOUTV) -- At one point this morning, parts of at least three major interstates in our area were all closed.

Interstate 81 and Interstate 84 in Wayne and Pike counties have both reopened. For many people their morning commute was a mess as a tractor trailers and other vehicles just couldn't handle the ice.

Well-after sunrise, first responders were still dealing with the impact of black ice on area roads. Interstate 81 southbound in Susquehanna county was closed for hours after a tractor trailer wrecked in the Lenox Township area.

The crash led to a six mile back-up and many drivers were stuck on the interstate. Some truckers who are used to dealing with the weather have never seen ice this bad.

"Not black ice," truck driver Dodd Oakes, said. "A lot of snow but not black ice. This is the first time. It's kind of scary."

Around 3am, ice started covering the roads throughout northeastern Pennsylvania. On route 940 in Monroe county, Eyewitness News found a jack-knifed tractor trailer. But that was just the beginning of the mess. On interstate 380 South in Lackawanna county, a bus crashed and ended-up on its side. 

"On the response to the interstate we had a hard time even leaving our firehouse, the roads were in that bad of a condition," Covington Township Fire Department Chief, Brad Jones said. 

Firefighters say ten people were on board. They were all able to get out on their own but several people were taken to the hospital for minor injuries. The bus was headed from Syracuse to New York City and conditions changed very quickly, according to one man on board.

Firefighters say after the ice came down, they had at least four crashes in this area and it was definitely a challenging morning.

"It's hard to even walk out here nevermind drive out here right now. PennDOT's doing all it can -- but there is so much of an area for them to cover -- it's just bad," Chief Jones said. 

Despite all the crashes this morning, state police have not yet told us that there were any serious injuries. 


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