Multiple vehicles crashed on I-15 northbound near 14600 South in Draper Thursday. (Utah Highway Patrol)
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SALT LAKE CITY — Northbound I-15 is being reopened near 14600 South on Thursday morning as crews continue to work to clear a multivehicle crash that involves an oil spill.
Just after 10 a.m., the Utah Highway Patrol said two lanes of I-15 will “open shortly at the Point of the Mountain but drivers are still encouraged to use alternate routes.” In a tweet posted at 10:46 a.m., UHP said northbound on-ramps would be closed to manage traffic in American Fork and Lehi at exits 276, 278, 279, 282 and 284.
Troopers suggest northbound drivers in Utah County take exit 278 or 282 west near Lehi to get to Redwood Road where there is less of a slowdown traveling north.
In an update at 9 a.m., troopers advised travelers to avoid the area from Lehi to Draper if possible, as it could take around three hours to travel from Utah County into Salt Lake County. As traffic slowed during the morning commute, some drivers were seen making U-turns in the middle of traffic to get out of the jam.
Troopers said drivers are not permitted to drive the wrong way on off-ramps to get out of traffic and told drivers not to park or abandon vehicles on the shoulders of the road.
An Amazon semitruck was northbound on I-15 near 14200 South around midnight when it jackknifed, blocking the right lanes, according to Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Cameron Roden. A car entered the freeway at 14600 South and merged into traffic to avoid the semi. Roden said a pickup truck traveling at a significantly higher speed then hit the back of that car.
Another semitruck with two tankers full of crude oil was traveling too fast for conditions in the area, lost control and slid into the back of the Amazon truck, Roden said. The tanker overturned and detached in the middle lane, spilling about 1,500 gallons of crude oil onto the freeway.
An SUV then hit the debris and crashed as well.
Traffic at 14600 was backed up around five miles Thursday morning, stretching into Utah County.
This is the line of cars getting rerouted off of exit 288. Troopers redirecting traffic to frontage road to Bangerter Hwy.
— Shelby Lofton (@newswithShelby) December 8, 2022
Hazardous materials crews are on the scene to help clean up.
Northbound traffic is being diverted off the freeway at 14600 South and back on again at Bangerter Highway. I-15 was initially expected to remain closed until at least 8 a.m. or 9 a.m., Roden said, although most lanes remained closed until after 10 a.m. After that, a partial closure will stay in place, likely until the middle of the day.
Extensive travel delays for I-15 northbound over Point of the Mountain. An Estimated full closure will extend well into the morning commute and a partial closure will extend beyond that. Plan travel and use alternate routes. pic.twitter.com/AyzvrSPdPz
— Utah Highway Patrol (@UTHighwayPatrol) December 8, 2022
No serious injuries were reported.
Several other crashes occurred throughout the Salt Lake Valley, as the National Weather Service reported nearly 2 inches of new snow overnight.
Four vehicles crashed on eastbound I-215 at Redwood Road in Taylorsville early Thursday, including a box truck. No major injuries were reported, but the crash temporarily closed the roadway just before 5 a.m.
Troopers also reported several crashes on state Route 201. Eastbound traffic was delayed at 9180 West in Magna due to a single-vehicle crash with no injuries. UDOT expects the highway to be cleared by 8:30 a.m. Another crash at 9800 West caused minor injuries and delays.
Contributing: Tyson Jackson
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Read More:2 northbound lanes of I-15 reopening after multivehicle crash, oil spill in Draper