Cleanup of Shenandoah County I-81 crash will finish Wednesday night

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SHENANDOAH COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) — UPDATE (5:45 p.m.):

Air3 drone footage of a tractor trailer crash at MM 271 of Interstate 81 on May 15

Cleanup from a tractor trailer crash in Shenandoah County will continue into the night, but for now, lanes are all reopen and traffic is moving smoothly.

Two separate crashes along the northbound stretch of Interstate 81 through Shenandoah County caused a traffic nightmare earlier on Wednesday.

First, an overturned tractor trailer blocked both northbound lanes at mile marker 271.2 near Mount Jackson. The call for that crash came in at 9:28 a.m.

According to Virginia State Police, a 2014 Volvo tractor trailer was heading north on I-81 when, at 9:20 a.m., it ran off the right side of the roadway, over-corrected, struck the guard rail, and ran down the embankment on the shoulder.

The driver, 31-year-old Azimullah Habibi, of Sacramento, was uninjured. He was charged with reckless driving.

At its worst point, backups from that scene stretched seven miles.

Mount Jackson Fire and Rescue, Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office, New Market Fire and Rescue, and VDOT helped respond to the scene, which was cleared by mid-day, though crews continued working in the field at the bottom of the embankment into the afternoon to remove the wreckage,

Next, a crash near Edinburg at mile marker 281 closed both northbound lanes as well, around 10:37 a.m. just over an hour after the first crash. Traffic got by on the right shoulder of that one.

A spokesman for the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) says that crash involved a tractor trailer hauling cabbages that crashed.

The truck was moved to the shoulder of the interstate, and crews will go back out Wednesday night around 10 p.m. when traffic volume is lower to continue cleaning up the scene.

No further information has been released on the second crash.

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UPDATE (2:00 p.m):

All lanes have reopened after two separate tractor trailer crashes slowed down traffic on Interstate 81 Wednesday morning and afternoon.

Earlier on Wednesday, a tractor trailer crash at mile marker 271, near Mount Jackson, and another tractor trailer crash at mile marker 281, north of Edinburg, closed all northbound lanes of I-81. VDOT reported traffic delays at one time were up to 7 miles and more than 2 miles respectively.

The delays on the interstate led to congestion on Rt. 11 near Mount Jackson. VDOT said at one point, delays were up to 4 miles because of that congestion.

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UPDATE (11:30 a.m.):

Two separate tractor trailer crashes on Interstate 81 are causing delays for drivers heading north on the interstate and Route 11 in Shenandoah County.

One northbound lane of I-81 is closed at mile marker 271 near Mount Jackson due to a tractor trailer crash. The Virginia Department of Transportation says traffic backups are about 7 miles long.

Another tractor trailer crash at mile marker 281, north of Edinburg, has also closed all northbound lanes of I-81. VDOT says drivers can expect delays of more than 2 miles, but traffic is getting by on the right shoulder.

The delays on the interstate led to congestion on Rt. 11 near Mount Jackson. VDOT said at one point, delays were up to 4 miles because of that congestion.

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UPDATE (10:47 a.m.):

VDOT reports left lane is now open. Traffic still backed up about three miles.

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VDOT is reporting lane closures on I-81 northbound in Shenandoah County due to a tractor trailer crash. The incident is 2.1 miles south of Route 703-Exit 273 (Mount Jackson/Bayse).

VDOT reports the north left lane, right lane, and right shoulder are closed. Traffic is using the left shoulder in the area. Backups extend approximately three miles.

Congestion on route 11 has delays up to four miles, according to VDOT.


Air3 drone footage of a tractor trailer crash at MM 271 of Interstate 81 on May 15