By Ron Brown
TALENT, Ore. — Traffic was snarled on southbound Interstate 5 between Talent and Phoenix on Wednesday morning following a four-car chain reaction pile-up.
Witnesses told police it all started when a truck slowed for construction south of Talent, then traffic suddenly stalled; that led to this white Pontiac hitting the rear of a pickup; it was then hit by a red car, which was then hit by a fourth car. While police were investigating that crash scene, a driver headed north on the other side of the freeway lost control and rolled over, knocking out a sign post. He was apparently not seriously injured.
At least one driver in the four-car pile-up blamed a state police traffic sting nearby for conditions leading to the chain-reaction accident. From 6:30 to 10:30 this morning police had extra patrols on Interstate 5 in the Rogue Valley enforcing the state’s nine-year-old “Move Over” law; that law requires drivers to move a lane over or slow down below the speed limit if a tow truck, construction workers or police are working along the shoulder of a roadway or freeway.
It’s actually a law in most states that drivers are required to give emergency workers an extra lane along the highway, but Matson says it’s not likely that Wednesday’s operation near Phoenix had anything to do with the multi-car crash at Talent.