Slide-offs play havoc on Toll Road

2013-03-18T10:00:00Z 2013-03-18T23:53:04Z Slide-offs play havoc on Toll RoadBy Keith Benman, (219) 933-3326

Brief road closures, slide offs, and crashes punctuated the early morning commute Monday, as motorists failed to slow down for slick conditions caused by rain freezing on roadways.

The eastbound Indiana Toll Road at the Interstate 65 interchange was closed for about 15 minutes around 6:30 a.m., according to Indiana State Police.

State police and emergency responders were busy, clearing off a large number of slide-offs there and at other locations that snarled traffic.

By 8:30 a.m., traffic was flowing normally but state police were advising people to be cautious.

Lowell Post Indiana state troopers were dealing with slide offs and crashes "too numerous to count" in the early morning hours, but only one resulted in injury to a motorist, according to Master Trooper E.F. Gilliam.

"The large numbers of accidents resulted from extremely slick and hazardous conditions due to the rain freezing on the roadways," he said.

Most accidents were on I-65, with a number of motorists sliding and crashing into the center median, Gilliam said. Other accidents were concentrated between the 12-mile marker and 15-mile marker on Interstate 80/94 and at the west end around the Kennedy Avenue and Indianapolis Boulevard ramps.

By 9:30 a.m. most of the mess was cleared up and traffic had largely returned to normal, Gilliam said.

The intersection of Columbia Avenue and Summer Street in Hammond saw multiple accidents, with reports of 10 vehicles involved, about the same time as the Toll Road snarl.

One accident occured around 5:53 a.m. involving three vehicles, according to a police report. In that accident, a driver told police she was traveling southbound on Columbia Avenue when she saw vehicles that were involved in a collision stopped in the roadway. She hit her brakes and slid into another waiting vehicle, causing it to rear end a third vehicle.

Four other accidents also were reported at the intersection, according to Hammond Police Lt. Richard Hoyda.

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