Crews work to clear the wreckage following a multi-vehicle accident on Highway 1 at the Vedder Canal Friday morning.

Highway 1 reopens after multi-vehicle crash snarls traffic in Chilliwack

Highway 1 over the Vedder Canal has reopened following a multi-vehicle crash early Friday morning that sent 14 people to hospital.

Highway 1 over the Vedder Canal has reopened following a multi-vehicle crash early Friday morning that sent 14 people to hospital.

No one was killed in the crash, which involved as many as 17 vehicles, including a Greyhound bus.

But the accident left the westbound lane littered with debris, smashed vehicles and vehicle fluid. Traffic was stopped in both directions as emergency crews struggled to free drivers from crumpled cars and trucks. The eastbound lane was reopened just after nine, however the westbound lane remained closed until 11:30 a.m..

Traffic was rerouted at Lickman Road to Keith Wilson. But with traffic reduced to a crawl, heavy delays were reported.

The incident began as dense smoke from a camp fire beneath the bridge sent smoke billowing across the narrow bridge deck. A driver, alarmed by the smoke, braked hard, resulting in a chain reaction.

Police say vehicles were likely following too close and traveling too fast for the road conditions.

The bridge has been the scene of several accidents over the years, including two separate accidents that have left three people dead. Recent upgrades have included reinforced retaining walls on the bridge deck, as well as improved signage.

Check back to for more information as it becomes available.

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