State Police looking for witnesses to fatal Thruway crash that sent semi over barrier

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A serious crash held up traffic for miles on the I-90 just before rush hour, lasting for nearly six hours, near exits to Route 33 and the I-290.

Police say a semi truck and two other cars collided in a crash, which jammed traffic just after 3 p.m. New York State Police say Cheektowaga resident Jason Askew, 34, was trying to merge onto I-90 from the Cleveland Drive ramp, before he was cut off by another vehicle.

State Police say Askew was then struck by a Volkswagon Jetta driven by Louis Martin, 56, of Niagara Falls.

After this, Martin’s vehicle hit a tractor trailer being driven by Buffalo resident Timothy Brown, 45, according to State Police. Both vehicles came to a rest in the median of the roadway.

State Police say Martin was pronounced dead at the scene. Askew was taken to ECMC with non-life threatening injuries and Brown was not injured.

Click here for a traffic map, detailing the crash located in the box on the I-90.
Click here for a traffic map, detailing the crash located in the box on the I-90.

The crash shot the involved semi truck over the barrier between east and westbound Thruway, closing off traffic in the left lanes of both directions. As police rushed to respond, traffic backed up for miles in both directions, with the longest delays keeping cars backed up for just over five miles.

Traffic remained moving slowly through, and police only closed off the arm to Thruway entrances near the scene of the crash.

Officers reopened lanes of the Thruway to normal traffic just after 9 p.m. after roughly six hours of responding, and attempting to recreate the scene of the crash.

The accident is still under investigation. State Police are asking any witnesses to call Investigator Richard Kline at (716) 759-8638.

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