News is breaking outside of Bensalem, Pa., where three massive car pileups have stalled highway traffic for miles. A bottleneck has occurred near the Willow Grove Exit on the Eastbound side of the Pennsylvania Turnpike (Bucks and Montgomery Counties), and by 11 a.m. has backed up traffic to the Midcounty Toll Plaza. Icy roads and heavy morning traffic is to blame.
The first accident occurred at 7:45 a.m. this morning on the Westbound side of the Turnpike, caused by a tractor trailer, which lead to a chain of cars piling up behind the initial wreck. This stretch has been known by locals to be treacherous, even in dry weather.
At least 100 cars are disabled in the pileups, with 16 people having been rushed to nearby Abington Memorial Hospital. Authorities are working to divert drivers away from this stretch of road, and back onto the highway beyond the incident. The Turnpike Commission has sprung into action "Plan X", an emergency action plan that has established pre-approved routes to divert motorists. Police and highway personnel are providing directional cards to the backlogged drivers to aid in the process.
Some accounts are conflicting, but this is a developing story. Updates to come accordingly.
[via My Fox Philadelphia and NBC Philadelphia]