VSP responds to roughly 200 traffic crashes Wednesday due to inclement weather

VSP responds to roughly 200 traffic crashes Wednesday due to inclement weather
State police responding to accidents on I-81 (Source: WHSV)

SHENANDOAH, Va. (WHSV) — Virginia State Police are warning residents to continue using caution when driving.

Throughout the day Wednesday, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) reported several accidents, lane closures and delays as the majority of the state encountered heavy winter weather.

Virginia State Police says that as of 3 p.m. on Dec. 16, officials have responded to roughly 200 traffic crashes and at least 125 disabled vehicles on Wednesday along Interstate-81.

Officials say the majority of the crashes only involved damages to vehicles and no injuries; most of the crashes involved vehicles sliding off the road and into a ditch, embankment or guardrail.

VSP officials say they are investigating one fatal crash as of 3 p.m., but cannot speak for any local agencies responding to crashes within their jurisdictions.

The fatal crash, according to a press release from Virginia State Police, was a single-vehicle crash that occurred on I-81 at the 94 mile marker. Officials say at approximately 7:45 a.m. on Wednesday, a Toyota Tacoma was traveling on I-81 when it ran off the right side of I-81, struck an embankment and overturned.

VSP says the driver, Brannagan K. Locklear, 19, of Pembroke, N.C., was transported to LewisGale Hospital in Pulaski, where he succumbed to his injuries. Officials say he was not wearing a seatbelt and slick road conditions were a factor in the cause of the crash.

VSP says motorists are advised to slow down when driving in winter storm conditions. Putting space between you and the vehicle in front of you, buckling up and using your headlights will also help limit crashes and injuries.

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