Update: Route 81 Reopened Following Multiple Accidents
Interstate 81 has reopened after multiple accidents prompted state police to close the southbound lanes of the highway between the Adams and Ellisburg exits.
The highway was closed for nearly three hours. Heavy lake effect snow caused hazardous driving conditions.
One accident was a multiple-vehicle pile-up involving a state trooper car.
Police tell 7 News reporter Matt McClusky the trooper was assisting a motorist who was off the road when two tractor-trailers came upon the scene in near white-out conditions.
Police say one tractor-trailer struck the police car, the other went off the road.
That caused a chain reaction that involved four more vehicles.
The trooper was uninjured, police say. Four others suffered non-life-threatening injuries and were taken to area hospitals.
McClusky, who was in the area, said visibility was near zero and he saw several cars off the road.
McClusky said traffic was at a standstill immediately following the accident and some cars made u-turns and drove north in the southbound lane.
Wednesday, October 1, 2014, Watertown, NY
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