Oregon Department of Transportation temporarily dropped the cable barrier to try to divert traffic back northbound after multiple crashes on Wednesday along I-5 southbound near Albany. School buses from Eugene have arrived to help transport stranded motorists to Pioneer Villa at exit 216.

Two drivers were killed in an at least 60-vehicle pileup on Interstate 5 southbound near Albany Wednesday, according to Oregon State Police.

A preliminary investigation showed a Freightliner CMV was stopped in the slow lane due to an earlier crash, state police said in a news release.

A Freightliner operated by Kirpal Singh, 63, of Yuba City, Calif., collided with the stopped CMV and caught fire.

This caused a chain reaction rear-ending of a Nissan Armada and a Ford Focus. Singh sustained fatal injuries. The drivers of the two cars and stopped CMV were uninjured.

The crash was the second chain-reaction crash on a 10-mile stretch on Interstate 5 within six hours, which occurred in heavy fog conditions.

The first crash was reported at milepost 211 around 8 a.m. Police on Friday said Phillip Frye, 29, of Portland, died during the first multi-vehicle crash. Four others were taken to area hospitals, with one person in serious condition. 

Oregon Department of Transportation temporarily dropped the cable barrier to try to divert traffic back northbound after multiple crashes on Wednesday along I-5 southbound near Albany. School buses from Eugene have arrived to help transport stranded motorists to Pioneer Villa at exit 216.

In all, at least 15 to 20 commercial vehicles and 45 passenger vehicles were involved, state police said.

School buses from Eugene helped take 30 to 40 stranded drivers to Pioneer Villa at exit 216. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and HAZMAT were on scene to control fluid leakage from about six vehicles.

Interstate 5 was closed for about eight hours while state police investigated.





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