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UPDATE: Pa. Turnpike WB Reopens After Chain Reaction Crash

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MORGANTOWN, Pa., (CBS) – A chain-reaction crash involving dozens of vehicles Thursday morning shut down a portion of the Pennsylvania Turnpike and Interstate 78.

PHOTOS: Crash Closes Pa. Turnpike

Chopper 3 was over the snowy, messy scene.

It happened about 50 miles west of Philadelphia between the Morgantown and Reading exits in Berks County.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike westbound was closed between Exit 298/Morgantown (I-176) and Exit 286/Lancaster/Reading (US-222) in Lancaster for about eight hours.

It reopened shortly before 5:30 p.m. Turnpike officials say there is a five mile backlog at Morgantown.

Close to 40 vehicles tattered and wrecked all over the Pennsylvania Turnpike in at least four separate pockets of chain reaction crashes with interstate shutdowns from Downingtown to Reading.

“It was snowing heavily, the roads were slick,” driver Jennifer Klimek said.

Jennifer Klimek was traveling west around 9 a.m. this morning when she says all of a sudden the snow ravaged the road and the pileup started.

“You don’t have a lot of time to react, but you do what you can,” she said.

Klimek collided with the vehicle in front of her. At the time she thought it was minor, until she saw bits of car and wreckage all around.

“You see it in like a movie, but when you see it for real, your heart goes out to anybody who may have been injured,” she said.

Pennsylvania State Police report at least 10 injuries as the westbound lanes stayed closed for close to eight hours.

It took Klimek’s husband Michael four hours on back roads to rush to his wife.

“I’m just thankful she’s safe,” he said.

TRAFFIC: For the latest traffic conditions, click HERE.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike operated under Level 1 Weather Conditions for almost three hours due to roadway conditions with poor visibility Thursday morning.  Advisories were canceled at 1 p.m.

Several accidents were reported Thursday morning as a burst of snow raced across our region.

In Chester County, an accident involving multiple vehicles was reported at about 10:13 a.m., jamming traffic on the Route 30 westbound between PA-113/Uwchlan Ave and PA-340 in Caln Township.

Shortly after 10:30 a.m., an accident involving several vehicles was reported on US 202 northbound between North Matthews Rd/To PA 29 in East Whiteland Township and North Swedesford Rd/To PA 252 in Tredyffrin Township.

US 202 Northbound was shut down at PA 29 and PA 252, but later reopened.

In Montgomery County, a car ran off the road around 11 a.m. on Route 422 westbound at the Oaks exit.  No serious injuries were reported.

WEATHER: For the latest forecast, click HERE.

Stay with CBSPhilly.com for the latest on this developing story.

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