Crash causes delays on I-66

A crash involving a tractor trailer Wednesday night continues to cause traffic delays on westbound Interstate 66 in Warren County.

A 2009 Nissan driven by Rubi Chavez, 28, of Stephens City, was rear-ended by a tractor trailer driven by William Teague, 77, of Whitmire, Florida, after she moved from the right to the left lane after seeing a police officer on the road shoulder near mile marker 10 at 6 p.m. Wednesday, state police Sgt. F.L. (Les) Tyler said Thursday.

After hitting the car, Teague struck the bridge and went over an embankment. Teague was taken to Warren Memorial Hospital, Tyler said.

Chavez, who was not injured, was charged by state police for an “unsafe lane change,” Tyler said.

Traffic was backed up about three miles on I-66 for about two hours on Wednesday. A detour was set up by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles at exit 13 to reroute traffic onto route 55 west to route 340 north and back onto to I-66 at exit 6. The left westbound lane was reopened at around 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Ken Slack, a VDOT spokesperson, said the tractor trailer was removed from the embankment at 12:45 p.m. Thursday, but the right westbound lane remained closed until 2:30 p.m.

“Apparently there’s guardrail damage they need to repair … our crews have made the decision to keep the lane closed for repairs because the traffic isn’t too bad,” Slack said.

Slack added, “Depending on traffic levels, sometimes we’ll even slide a truck into the median or on the shoulder to wait until overnight when the traffic levels are down, but from what I understand, the levels are such in that where keeping the lane closed doesn’t have much of an effect on flow.”

The Virginia State Police was assisted by the Warren County Sheriff’s Office, Front Royal Fire and Rescue and the North Warren Fire and Rescue.

Contact staff writer Henry Culvyhouse at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or hculvyhouse@nvdaily.com