A large trailer-truck plowed into several cars stuck in a traffic queue on the E18 highway at the Bentsrud intersection, near Holmestrand late Monday afternoon. Nine people in seven cars were involved, with one of those injured sent by helicopter to Oslo University Hospital.
Three ambulance helicopters were sent to the scene of the crash, where health care personnel and other emergency services were tending to the injured. The southbound lanes of the E18 were blocked and closed to thru traffic.
Police said the chain of events began with an accident earlier in the afternoon a bit farther south on the E18. It caused traffic to build up behind it until it was all standing still.
Then the truck, approaching from the north, didn’t manage to stop in time, crashing into a passenger vehicle from behind. That set off what police called a “domino effect,” involving several more vehicles including three cars and a van.
Some of the drivers and passengers were pinned inside their vehicles. A total of five people were sent to area hospitals by air and one was driven by ambulance to the hospital in Tønsberg.
Police were urging southbound motorists to either drive through Holmestrand on the old E18 highway or detour through Grenland, since the E18 motorway was expected to remain closed into the evening.