A four-vehicle accident on Interstate 85 Northbound involving a Gwinnett County Police Department officer virtually shut down the thoroughfare for about two-and-a-half hours during rush-hour Monday afternoon, and left two in critical condition.
According to Gwinnett police Cpl. Wilbert Rundles, shortly before 5:30 p.m., Officer Todd Ramsey, a 22-year veteran of the department, notified the Gwinnett County 911 Center that he'd been involved in a wreck about a mile south of Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road.
"Officer Ramsey was traveling north on I-85 in lane two in his marked patrol car," Rundles said. "He struck the rear end of a Kia Sorento, which began the chain of events."
Due to the force in which Ramsey's car hit the Kia, which was being driven by 33-year-old Sarah Wood, the Kia was pushed into a Hyundai Elantra that was in front of it, the accident report said.
Then, because of the hill the vehicles were on, Ramsey's car ended up rolling backwards, which then ran into a fourth vehicle -- a Chevy Silverado.
Ramsey and Wood were both seriously injured in the wreck and were transported to Gwinnett Medical Center-Lawrenceville.
"Officer Ramsey has been moved out of the ICU and is still hospitalized in serious but stable condition," Rundles said Tuesday. "Sarah Wood is still hospitalized in serious condition.
The 21-year old female driver of the third vehicle was treated for injuries at the accident scene, but was not taken to a hospital. A 31-year old man who was driving the fourth vehicle did not complain of any injuries and was allowed to drive his home from the scene of the accident, Rundles said.
At one point, five of the six northbound lanes on I-85 were shut down and police were encouraging drivers to get off the interstate at Pleasant Hill Road. Shortly after 8 p.m., police announced all lanes had been reopened to traffic.
The collision is being investigated by the Gwinnett County Police Department's Accident Investigation Unit is ongoing.