PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Three people are dead after multi-vehicle accidents on both the Schuylkill Expressway and the Blue Route Sunday because of wet and icy roads.

One person was killed and several dozen others were injured after a pileup involving at least 50 vehicles on the westbound Schuylkill Expressway near the Gulph Mills exit (Exit 330). It happened just before 7 a.m.

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The victim who died has been identified as 31-year-old Eric Blau from Philadelphia. He reportedly got out of his car because it wasn’t working and was struck and killed. The pileup began shortly after and lasted for hours.

“It was just a big, load of cars,” says driver Colleen Graves. “A lot of mayhem and chaos going on.”

She tells Eyewitness News she was stuck about a mile behind the pileup for several hours:

“I saw a lot of people just not paying attention, driving way too quick.”

(credit: CBS 3)

(credit: CBS 3)

The expressway was shut down for more than seven hours as a result of the crash, but reopened around 2:15 p.m.

State police say there were about 30 injuries. Some were treated on the scene and others were taken to local hospitals.

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Two others were killed and several more people were injured in a separate multi-vehicle crash along southbound I-476 at Marple Road in Broomall, Delaware County. According to state police, three cars slammed into a jackknifed tractor-trailer and became wedged underneath.

The victims in this accident have been identified as Thomas Brennan from Lansdale and Jason Anderson from Dover, Delaware.

(credit: Steve Patterson)

(credit: Steve Patterson)

This accident lasted about five hours and the roads are now reopen.

“It was pretty horrific,” commuter Bijal Patel says. She considers herself lucky:

“I was kinda shaken up. It easily could have been me.”

Patel was on her way to work at a nearby hospital when this happened around 7:30 a.m. She, along with dozens of others were forced into a harrowing moment.

“I started pumping my brakes and just hoping I would stop,” Patel said.

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The weather also caused serious accidents and closures along other major highways throughout the Philadelphia region, including I-95, and it forced the closure of all Delaware River Port Authority bridges for several hours. READ MORE:

Authorities are urging drivers throughout the region to use caution and to avoid travel, if possible.
Conditions are expected to improve, especially since temperatures climbed into the mid-40s in most areas, but icy conditions may form again overnight.
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