DULUTH - Police said Friday evening's multi-vehicle wreck on Interstate 85 that snarled rush hour traffic for several hours was caused by a motorist rear-ending another driver, setting off a chain of collisions that left four people hospitalized.
According to a preliminary investigation, the melee began at 6:30 p.m. when a Ford F250 traveling northbound on I-85 slammed into an Acura TL stopped in rush hour traffic. The Acura struck the rear of a Saturn, which subsequently struck the rear of a Chevy Silverado.
After the initial collision, the driver of the Ford F250, traveling in the emergency lane, hit the median wall, spun across five lanes of traffic, and crashed into a BMW 540i.
The collisions occurred on a stretch of I-85 between Pleasant Hill Road and Ga. Highway 316.
"This remains an active investigation and charges are still pending at this time," Gwinnett police spokesman Cpl. David Schiralli said.
Police have ruled out alcohol or drugs as contributing factors in the collision.
Four people were hospitalized with serious injures, but are expected to survive. They are Ronald Jackson, 56, of Roswell, driver of the Ford F250; Buford resident Hyun An, 25, who was driving the Acura, and her 2-year-old daughter, Jina Hong; and Jose Rodriquez, 42, of Lawrenceville, driver of the BMW.
The two occupants of the Saturn - Catherine Bishop, 43, and 18-year-old Chris Bishop - were treated at an area hospital with minor injuries.
Glen Porter, 27, of Mobile, Ala., driver of the Chevy Silverado, was not injured, police said.
Traffic was backed up for several miles while crews worked the scene.
All lanes were reopened by 9:25 p.m., according to the Georgia Department of Transportation.