Accident causes closure of US 322

Reedsville-area crash only major weather-related incident reported locally

LEWISTOWN — A tractor-trailer accident caused a temporary roadway shut down near the Reedsville exit of U.S. 322 eastbound on Wednesday in Derry Township, the most significant weather-related traffic incident in the Juniata Valley.

According to a report from Mifflin County Regional Police Department, the crash occurred around 2:05 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon. Upon investigation, officials found that a 2016 Freightliner operated by Keith Hodge struck and straddled Pennsylvania Department of Transportation guiderails along the roadway. The truck and trailer continued to travel approximately 225 feet along the guiderails before coming to rest.

Earlier in the day, PennDOT had issued a temporary reduction in the speed limit on Route 322 in Mifflin and Juniata counties to 45 mph. The speed limit in that area is normally 55 mph.

The crash required Route 322 eastbound to be shut down for approximately four hours and westbound traffic was reduced to one lane while PennDOT workers cleared the scene. The roadway has been reopened and no injuries were reported as a result of the crash.

Hodge was cited for driving too fast for the weather conditions and the truck and trailer were towed from the scene. MCRPD was assisted on the scene by Brown Township Fire Police and the Reedsville Fire Co.

While roadways remained icy, no other major accidents or traffic delays were reported in other parts of the region.

According to officials from Juniata County Emergency Dispatch, a few minor accidents were reported such as vehicles sliding off the road or tractor-trailers becoming stuck in the snow, however, none of the reports required emergency services.

Schools in the area were closed Wednesday due to the weather and the Mifflin County and Juniata County school districts had announced as of Wednesday evening that Thursday classes would be delayed by two hours due to the potential for melted snow and ice to refreeze on area roadways overnight.

Approximately four to six inches of snow fell in the area Wednesday in addition to a wintry mix of precipitation.