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UPDATE: Road Now Clear After Big Rig Crash On Southbound 101 in San Rafael

"It was a miracle that no one was injured or worse," said San Rafael Fire Chief Chris Gray.

Photo courtesy: San Rafael Fire Department
Photo courtesy: San Rafael Fire Department
Update:  1:40 p.m.: 

California Highway Patrol officials report that Highway 101 is now clear, and that a Sig Alert has been cancelled, following Monday morning's wreck in San Rafael. 

Traffic is backed up to Novato, but should begin to start flowing soon.
 
"All lanes are now open, so hopefully it will start to clear out," CHP Officer Andrew Barclay told Patch by phone at 1:40 p.m.
 


Update:  1:25 p.m.: 

 
As of 1 p.m. Monday, CHP crews were still working to clear the wreckage of an overturned semi-truck in San Rafael, according to San Rafael Fire Chief Chris Gray. 
 
Gray, who shared a photo attached to this article showing the truck now upright, said motorists should continue to avoid  the area if possible.  
 
"Please be patient and safe out there," he said. 



Original story published at 11:30 a.m. as follows: 

An overturned semi-truck on Highway 101 near Hetherton has traffic at a standstill while crews work to clear the wreckage, officials report. 
 
The crash was reported around 10:40 a.m. in the southbound lanes of the highway, according to California Highway Patrol logs.   By 10:45 a.m., all lanes were blocked. 

The tractor with a trailer containing eight old and crushed vehicles jackknifed between the Central San Rafael on-ramp and Interstate Highway 580, CHP officials said.
 
San Rafael Fire Chief Chris Gray says local firefighters are on scene of the solo-vehicle crash. 
 
"The truck driver was evaluated on scene by San Rafael Paramedics and released," he said in an email at 11:25 a.m.
 
Here's more from the fire chief: 
 
No hazardous materials were involved. Diesel fuel was found leaking from the truck and is now under control.  A heavy tow is onscene to assist with righting the vehicle.  One of the cables holding the crushed cars in place on the flat bed truck broke loose during the accident creating additional challenges for the rescuers. Firefighters will be onscene for sometime. 

The chief added that traffic on the 101 will be halted for at least an hour. 
 
"It was a miracle that no one was injured or worse," he said.  
 
Southbound traffic was passing the scene in the paved center median as of late Monday morning, CHP Officer Andrew Barclay said.   

No vehicles spilled onto the highway from the trailer, Barclay said
 
The tractor-trailer was swaying from side to side before it overturned and a small fuel spill was immediately contained, he said.
 


 
Ventress Dugan July 07, 2014 at 04:37 PM
It just took me 2 hours to get to San Rafael to pick up my grandson at Sail School.....this trip is normally 15 minutes. That was Novato to Loch Lomand. Then it was backed up to Marinwood....now backed up to Ignacio as of 15 minutes ago. Good luck.
Carol X July 07, 2014 at 07:50 PM
What the hell is a Sig Alert? You want to explain that term to your readers?
Sam July 07, 2014 at 08:59 PM
If you don't know what a Sig Alert is you should not be driving on any Freeway .
Carol X July 08, 2014 at 04:29 PM
Oh really? Well then, I guess I'll have to find out. Okay, I found out. It's a CHP term taken from an LAPD name for a communications system. So a term used by cops and radio stations. Gee, I'd have to say your snark is misplaced.
Olive DePonte July 14, 2014 at 08:52 PM
For anyone unfamiliar with Sig Alerts, they were named after Loyd C. "Sig" Sigmon, who devised the alert system in 1955 (the term entered the Oxford English Dictionary in 1993): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sig_Alert. I remember in 1985 when my husband was rear-ended by a 1959 Ford pickup on the 110S in LA, he informed me by saying, "I was the Sig Alert on the radio this afternoon..."

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