Tonawanda News

November 13, 2013

18-car pileup on 290 in the Town

Staff Reports
The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — Wintery conditions caused at least 18 vehicles to pile-up on Interstate 290 late Monday evening, police said.  

Slick, ice-covered roadways caused a chain reaction on a ramp leading to the I-190 south, according to Town of Tonawanda police, sending emergency crews to the scene shortly before 11 p.m. Black ice was deemed to be the cause of the crash that shut down portions of both interstates for approximately three hours. 

Police said no one was seriously injured though many people were checked over by rescue crews for whiplash and several were taken to local hospitals. One person was reported to have a broken arm. 

Chief James Chatham, of the Sheridan Park Fire Company, said his unit was called to the scene to assist with traffic and the clean-up of gasoline leaking from several damaged vehicles. 

“From what I saw it was a chain reaction,” Chatham said. “It was definitely a scene we don’t come across often.”

He said that many of the damaged vehicles were pulled to a nearby exit and held into a parking lot to expedite opening up portions of the Thruway. 

“There were several tow agencies out there,” he said. “They were stored in the parking lot and transferred from there.” 

Chatham said several other cars involved in the melee were not damaged, though were “stuck in the middle” of others with damage, adding that the accident could have been much worse. 

“There were definitely a lot of impacts,” he said. “We got lucky.”