Outer loop delays after truck carrying pineapples overturns

December 6, 2012

Update: 4 p.m.:

All lanes reopened at 3:35 p.m. after two tow trucks removed the tractor-trailer from the center lane. Traffic is backed up past U.S. Route 29 and ongoing delays are expected through the evening rush, officials said.

Two trucks were able to transport the truck’s many hundreds of boxes of kiwi, blueberries, pineapples, grapes and other produce after seven hours of work, said Maryland State Highway Administration spokesperson David Buck.

Update, 2:24 p.m.:

Two right lanes of the Beltway were closed this afternoon as crews tried to upright the overturned truck before removing it. Delays stretched for several miles ahead of the evening rush.

Update, 9:27 a.m.:

The outer loop is still jammed in Bethesda after a pineapple truck overturned early Friday morning, officials said.

Delays now stretch about nine miles and are expected to persist for at least another hour. 

The tractor-trailer was carrying pineapples and other produce. Crews emptied the contents of the truck and another truck arrived on the scene to transport the produce. 

Update, 6:54 a.m.:

Delays on the outer loop of the Beltway near I-270 now extend about eight miles. Officials are urging drivers to avoid using I-495, if possible. 

The tractor-trailer that flipped onto its side early this morning has been righted, but officials say it probably won’t be cleared from the roadway until about 11 a.m.

WJLA reports that the truck was carrying 70,000 pounds of pineapples and blueberries.

 

Original post:

One lane of the outer loop is closed this morning after a tractor-trailer overturned near the I-270 split. 

The crash happened around 2 a.m. when the driver of an 18-wheel tractor-trailer lost control of the vehicle, officials said. 

The right lane of the outer belt is expected to be closed through at least 10 or 11 a.m., officials said. Traffic congestion is expected to build through the morning rush. 

The driver of the tractor-trailer is being treated at a local hospital for minor injuries. No other vehicles were involved in the crash. 

Authorities are investigating whether reckless driving or speeding was a factor in the incident. 

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Luz Lazo | December 6, 2012