Low visibility leads to 40-car crash on eastern Idaho highway –

Several crashes occurred after a semi truck hit a car that was stopped on the highway, ISP said. Only minor injuries were reported.

ISLAND PARK, Idaho — Idaho State Police say roughly 40 cars and trucks were involved in a crash on U.S. Highway 20 after severe winter weather caused white-out conditions.

ISP said in a news release that the crash happened at about 3 p.m. Friday just north of Island Park.

Low visibility had cloaked the road when a semi-truck collided with a passenger car that was stopped in the eastbound lane. Several more crashes occurred behind the semi-truck, ultimately involving about 40 vehicles.

Law enforcement agencies from Idaho and Montana responded to the crash, and several tow companies helped with removing the vehicles.

Only minor injuries were reported.

U.S. Highway 20 between Ashton and the Idaho-Montana state line, which includes the crash scene, was closed Friday night. The Idaho Transportation Dept. indicated Saturday that the highway was open again, and advised of ice and cloudy weather conditions.

Elsewhere in Idaho, Highway 21 remains closed from the Grandjean junction to Banner Summit, the area between Lowman and Stanley known as “avalanche alley.” ITD reports avalanche risk, and says the department will reassess at 3 p.m. Saturday.

As the weather and road conditions can change quickly, especially in winter, Idaho State Police urge drivers to be aware of the conditions before heading out onto the roads. Road condition updates for Idaho can be found online here, or by calling 511.

ISP also has the following tips to help keep drivers and their passengers traveling safely during winter driving conditions.

  • Plan for extra travel time: Safe winter driving often means traveling less than half the posted speed limit.
  • Slow down and allow more space between you and the driver in front of you.
  • Slow down well before a stop or a turn to stay in control. Even vehicles with good traction need extra time and space;

For more winter driving safety information from Idaho State Police, go to this page.

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