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Multi-Vehicle Accident Briefly Closes Part Of I-85 In Durham

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DURHAM, N.C. — Crews have cleared the scene of an accident in the southbound lanes of Interstate 85 in Durham.

The accident occurred around 8 a.m. Friday in the construction zone between Guess Road and Hillandale Road. Authorities say eight cars were involved in the accident.

At the time of the accident, authorities had to shut both southbound lanes. Road crews reopened the roadway at around 9:20 a.m.

Officials with the state Department of Transportation officials said the layout of the construction zone did not play a role in the accident. However, they admit that the traffic delays caused by the way the ramps are laid out may have contributed to delays that led to the accident.

Crews have been working on widening the roadway in the area since 1999. Officials hope to have the work completed by June 2006.

"With an urban interstate like this, there are so many variables to contend with -- utilities, traffic, just everything that is involved, and it takes a long time," said DOT engineer Aaron Earwood. "The project was divided into three phases and this last phase did not start until 2003."

There were no serious injuries and charges have not yet been filed in the accident.

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