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A multi-vehicle accident in the eastbound lanes of the Ohio Turnpike ties up traffic Wednesday, March 12, 2014, near Clyde, Ohio. Pileups on the Ohio Turnpike involving at least 50 vehicles killed at least three people and seriously injured a state trooper on Wednesday, said the Ohio State Highway Patrol. / Jeremy Wadsworth, AP

CLEVELAND -- Three people were killed and a state trooper was in serious condition Wednesday after multiple pileups involving dozens of vehicles shut down the Ohio Turnpike in Erie and Sandusky counties.

Turnpike officials said all lanes were blocked Wednesday evening at milepost 102 eastbound in Sandusky County, where there was a 2-mile-long stretch of crashes involving about 50 vehicles.

All lanes were also blocked at milepost 112 westbound in Erie County.

Emergency workers on the busy toll road struggled to reach accidents and stuck vehicles because of snowy conditions and traffic backups.

The State Highway Patrol said there were three fatalities, and a trooper who was pinned between two vehicles was taken to Firelands Hospital in Sandusky in serious condition.

Troopers say the first crash was reported at approximately 1:25 p.m. EDT and Patrol personnel learned the trooper was pinned at 2:05 p.m.

Drivers sat for hours, a few braving the cold to stretch their legs, said Mike Ramella, a salesman from the Cleveland suburb of Westlake.

"I'm just sending emails, still working," said Ramella, who was in the middle of a 7-mile backup.

The crashes remain under investigation.

Contributing: The Associated Press



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: 3 killed, Ohio Turnpike shut down after pileups

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