GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado - A chain reaction of accidents on westbound Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon Saturday evening closed the interstate for a short period of time before it was reopened later that night.
At approximately 4:45 p.m., the Colorado State Patrol responded to multiple vehicle crashes just west of Hanging Lake Tunnel in Glenwood Canyon.
Initially, a white 2004 Dodge Dakota, driven by Hailey M. Wells, 18, of Montrose, skidded out control on the slushy and icy roadway before colliding with the bridge rail and coming to rest in the left, westbound lane. A 2013 Volkswagen Jetta, driven by Mindy S. Baumgardner, 45, of Montrose, who was traveling with Wells, stopped on the right shoulder to assist, the CSP reported.
Subsequently, a chain reaction of three additional crashes occurred involving seven additional vehicles, including two tractor trailers. As a result, all vehicles were blocking both lanes of westbound travel through Glenwood Canyon.
According to the CSP report, Wells suffered a broken left hand. She was cited for careless driving causing injury. Baumgardner, whose car was hit by a 2005 Freightliner, driven by Vitali Gasiouk, 47, of Dillon, suffered serious rib injuries. Esther Brady, 52, Boulder, suffered a minor head injury when the 2006 Toyota Matrix she was a passenger in, was hit by the trailer pulled by the Freightliner. There were no other injuries.
The State Patrol, Glenwood Springs Fire Department and EMS, and the Colorado Department of Transportation, all responded to the scene. Blaine Ward Towing, Valley Towing, and CATS Towing arrived to remove the vehicles.