Semi Carrying Turkeys Crashes on I-81, Driver Charged

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11:23 a.m.

VDOT says the detour has been removed, and both northbound lanes are back open.

According to Virginia State Police Sergeant Robert Carpentieri, of State Police's Salem division, the crash took place around 5:20 a.m.

The investigating trooper's preliminary investigation found that 41-year-old Linus Eric Raber, of Midland, N.C., was driving a 1997 Peterbilt tractor-trailer hauling live turkeys northbound on I-81 when he ran off the right side of the highway, hit a guardrail, overcorrected, then flipped.  The crash blocked both lanes.

State Police charged Raber with reckless driving, but did not say what caused him to drive off the road.

11:04 a.m.

VDOT says traffic is backed up three miles.

Both northbound lanes are still blocked at Buchanan.

Northbound traffic is being detoured at Exit 162, and back onto I-81 at Exit 167.

7:28 a.m.

According to Botetourt County Emergency Management Coordinator Carr Boyd, the lane closures will be in place for several hours.

The only vehicles police are letting bypass the detour are the ones that were stuck behind the truck when the accident initially happened. We're told there was a small diesel fuel spill but that has been cleaned up.

The company that owns the live turkeys is on its way to the scene to advise emergency crews of the best way to remove the birds from the wreck properly.

6:13 a.m.

Virginia State Police say troopers and fire crews are at the scene of an accident in Botetourt County.

A tractor trailer hauling live turkeys rolled over near Exit 167 on Interstate 81.

No one was hurt.

The two northbound lanes are closed and detours are in place.

Traffic is being diverted at Exit 162 and back onto I-81 North at Exit 167.

Police say lanes will likely be closed for at least a few hours.


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