Cleanup Closes Interstate 96

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A westbound portion of Interstate 96 was closed for a few hours Thursday so a last semi truck could be cleared from the road one day after 220 vehicles were involved in fogbound pileups.

Law enforcement closed the westbound lanes at Exit 119 east of Lansing on Thursday morning, Ingham County Sheriff's Deputy David Roe said. The highway reopened in the early afternoon.

A blinding fog caused the trucks and cars to pile into one another and halted traffic for nine hours Wednesday. A teenage boy and a man died and 37 others were hospitalized as crashes happened in both eastbound and westbound lanes.

The interstate reopened late Wednesday but needed to be closed again Thursday to remove the semi.

Seven people remained hospitalized Thursday at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, a spokeswoman said. Three of them were in intensive care.

Another 12 people were treated and released Wednesday night or early Thursday.

Two other area hospitals treated victims.

The dense fog formed as area temperatures topped 50 degrees following heavy snows earlier in the week.

State troopers and sheriff's deputies were investigating the crashes to determine if any charges should be brought, sheriff's Lt. Jeffrey Joy said. He said the primary factor in the crashes appeared to be the fog.