Series of wrecks involving tractor-trailers cause major delays on metro Atlanta interstates

The crash on I-85 has had traffic blocked for hours Wednesday.

Credit: Georgia Department of Transportation

Credit: Georgia Department of Transportation

The crash on I-85 has had traffic blocked for hours Wednesday.

A slew of unrelated crashes involving tractor-trailers caused major issues for drivers navigating through metro Atlanta on Wednesday.

One of the crashes involving a semitruck blocked I-85 for hours in South Fulton as authorities worked to clean up the wreckage.

According to police, the wreck began when a mattress fell out of pickup truck traveling north just before the Buffington Road overpass. The driver of the truck stopped on the side of the interstate to remove the mattress from the roadway, South Fulton police spokesman Lt. Derrick Rogers said.

A tractor-trailer saw what was happening and managed to stop in time. A second semitruck was unable to stop, however, and hit the back of the truck in front of it, causing the driver to lose control.

The first truck lost its load of water all over the interstate while the second jackknifed and caught fire, authorities said. One driver was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital with minor injuries.

Georgia Department of Transportation cameras showed plastic debris scattered all over the highway.

The cleanup effort took hours, and South Fulton police didn’t begin reopening the interstate until about 2 p.m. One right lane remained closed nearly five hours later, according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center.

Another wreck involving an overturned big rig caused headaches for Clayton County drivers on I-675, the Traffic Center reported. That crash shut down all northbound lanes of the interstate near Anvilblock Road, authorities said.

The roadway reopened about 11:30 a.m., according to Clayton police. Only minor injuries were reported.

A third incident involving a jackknifed tractor-trailer shut down all southbound lanes of I-285 just before I-20 in DeKalb County on Wednesday morning. The roadway reopened shortly before noon, but authorities have not said if anyone was injured.

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