Lethbridge Police have issued multiple tickets to the driver of truck and trailer that rolled over on Whoop Up Drive causing significant damage to the bridge deck and closure of the westbound lanes.
The closure on Whoop Up Drive caused significant traffic delays and an increase in the volume of vehicles on Highway 3/Crowsnest Trail. A chain reaction collision involving 10 vehicles subsequently occurred in the westbound lanes of Crowsnest Trail, further exacerbating the traffic congestion and resulting in many motorists being gridlocked for several hours while emergency responders and City crews attended to the collisions scenes on both bridges.
On June 28, at approximately 4:23 p.m. police responded to multiple reports that a truck and trailer had rolled over in the westbound lanes of Whoop Up Drive. Upon arrival, police observed significant damage to the truck, trailer, load and asphalt as well as spillage of hazardous fluids along with countless roofing nails, screws and other sharp roofing parts the truck had been hauling. No one was injured. Alberta Sheriffs, with expertise in examining commercial vehicles and trailers, also responded to the scene. Following further investigation, the truck and trailer was found to have multiple equipment violations and the driver was subsequently charged under the Traffic Safety Act.
A 29-year-old Lethbridge man is charged with operating a trailer without a properly functioning emergency brake system, emergency break away cable not properly connected to the towing unit, towing a trailer without proper attachments and exceeding the certificate weight. The tickets carry a total monetary penalty of just over $1,000.
At 5:22 p.m. police responded to the Oldman River bridge along Highway 3/Crowsnest Trail following a 10 vehicle, chain reaction collision. Investigation determined the lead vehicle had stopped for traffic ahead, but numerous vehicles behind it did not and 10 vehicles subsequently collided. The matter remains under investigation with the drivers directed to attend the Collision Reporting Centre.
In addition, at approximately 5:30 p.m. a semi-truck travelling eastbound on Highway 3 rear-ended another semi-truck, causing significant damage to the offending vehicle. The eastbound lanes of Highway 3 were subsequently closed for a shorter period of time while the vehicles were cleared from the roadway. A 39-year-old Cardston man was charged under the Traffic Safety Act with following too closely.
During heavy traffic congestion and bumper-to bumper traffic, drivers are remined to ensure adequate space between vehicles and keep their focus and attention on the roadway.
Police thank motorists for their cooperation and patience during the road closures while the collisions were investigated and the vehicles cleared from the scenes.