Local News

Drivers Upset Over Amount Of Time Taken To Clear Inner Beltline Wreck

Posted February 11, 2004 5:29 a.m. EST

— A wreck that backed up traffic for more than two hours during Wednesday morning's commute has been cleared, but drivers want to know what took so long.

A maintenance truck and a dump truck wrecked along the inner Beltline between Hammond and Rock Quarry roads in Raleigh around 7 a.m. The trucks went off the side of the road and hit a traffic sign before coming to a stop.

Two lanes of the inner beltline were blocked by emergency vehicles, causing back-ups as far as N.C. 42 in Johnston County.

Some people said the problem was the three hours it took Raleigh police to clear the scene. Raleigh police said the accident was so close to the highway that they had to close off several lanes in order for their investigators to work safely.

Raleigh police Capt. Mike Teem said police policy is to clear a scene completely before they reopen lanes to traffic.

"The rule of thumb would be and our procedure would be to stay on the scene until the accident is investigated, the vehicles are removed and the roadway is safe for people to get on their way," he said.

Raleigh City Manager Russell Allen said while it may inconvenience drivers, he believed the police department's policy on clearing accidents is a good one.

The cause of the wreck is under investigation. No one was hurt.