Update: Route 17 N/B Reopened After Overhead Sign In Wild Tractor-Trailer Crash Is Replaced

UPDATE: Northbound Route 17 in Mahwah was reopened around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday following a wild tractor-trailer crash earlier in the day. Only one lane of the southbound highway was open during the evening rush.

Aerial view of the crash on northbound Route 17 in Mahwah on Wednesday, April 2.

Aerial view of the crash on northbound Route 17 in Mahwah on Wednesday, April 2.

Photo Credit: Nitin Shukla

There miraculously were no serious injuries in the crash, which left the rig scattered across both sides of the highway near the New York State border around 10 a.m. Aug. 2, Mahwah Mayor Jim Wysocki said.

The rig had split into pieces, with a huge container landing on a passing SUV on the other side of the divider and thousands of lemons spilling onto the highway.

An overhead signpost was struck and had to be replaced, which kept the northbound highway closed for several hours. Southbound remained down to one lane until further notice, the state Department of Transportation said.

The driver, who's from Ontario, Canada, said he felt the load shift, tried to correct it and dislodged the container, Mahwah Police Capt. Guido Bussinelli said.

The box flew off the trailer and split open -- dumping hundreds of crates of lemons -- after it landed on the other side of the median in the southbound lanes near the Mountainside Avenue overpass, Bussinelli said.

The container crashed onto the hood of an Audi, triggering its airbags, the captain said.

The tractor-trailer driver and the SUV operator, who's from Monroe, NY, were taken to a local hospital with injuries that weren't considered life-threatening, Businelli said.

The tractor remained upright, with the trailer resting perpendicular on its side beneath the bridge.

The signpost, which was nicked in another tractor-trailer crash last week, was bent this time and required immediate attention, the DOT said.

The northbound highway remained closed while the sign was replaced.

"This was one of the wildest things I've ever seen," said Mahwah Mayor Jim Wysocki, who was assisting at the scene. "Thank God no one was seriously hurt."

Various police, firefighters and EMS units, along with a state Department of Transportation crew, converged on the scene near the Sheraton Crossroads and Route 287.

Police from neighboring towns helped direct traffic.

Mahwah police are investigating the cause.


ALSO SEE: Tractor-Trailer Slams Into Signpost, Spills Wood Across Route 17 Near State Line In Mahwah

A tractor-trailer driver escaped injury when a load of wood shifted and his rig slammed into a signpost on northbound Route 17 near the state line in Mahwah.


Nitin Shukla, who lives in Mahwah, provided drone shots of the wreckage. For video, go to his YouTube channel: @Shuklaphoto_graphy


to follow Daily Voice Pascack Valley and receive free news updates.