La Salle, Illinois — The road surface of Interstate 39 between La Salle and Oglesby buckled causing severe accidents and substantially delaying traffic. The report field by WIFR indicated that Illinois State Police troopers left only one northbound lane open and closed the remainder of the road to allow work crews to repair the damage. There was no indication provided as to how long the road repairs are supposed to last. Illinois State Police would only say that they expected the lane closures to last for “an extended period of time.”
Illinois State Police responding out of the District 17 barracks did not share any information with the media about the potential cause of the road surface of the left lane of I-39 north buckling. The State Police made the announcement at 8:30 p.m. via social media but did not say what time they received reports about the road failure or any of the accidents caused by the buckling road. State Police advised motorists to use caution if they were approaching the area.
Illinois State Police said they received several reports of motor vehicle collisions in the area of the road buckling. The State Police did not provide a specific number of crashes that happened because of the road deformity. Additionally, police did not say whether any motorist sustained injuries in any of the subsequent crashes.
The News Tribune reported that the road buckled near milepost 58. The News Tribune also commented that I-39 buckled in 2016 and 2017. The paper said that the I-39 road surface buckled twice in the previous three years due to excessive summer heat and higher than usual rain accumulation. The road buckling incidents in 2016 and 2017 also caused several car crashes. There was no indication given about the number of casualties attributable to the road problems in 2016 or 2017.
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