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Two wrecks snarl rush-hour traffic on I-20

CONYERS — Two wrecks on the interstate in Rockdale County Wednesday morning wreaked havoc on rush-hour traffic all the way into Newton County.

The first wreck occurred just before 7 a.m. on Interstate 20 westbound near the Ga. Highway 138 exit and involved six vehicles in a chain-reaction collision, according to Conyers Police Department Officer Kim Lucas.

Lucas said that the wreck was a series of rear-end collisions that were due to sudden stops when drivers were following too closely behind other vehicles.

As a result of the crashes, three wreckers were called and a 53-year-old male driver was transported by EMS to Rockdale Medical Center for minor injuries. The left-hand and center lanes of travel were shut down for an hour, Lucas said.

Just about the time the interstate was reopened, another crash occurred a little further east on I-20 near the Salem Road exit.

Sgt. Andrew Arnold with the Rockdale County Sheriff’s Office said sometime around 8 a.m., an unknown vehicle cut in front of a tractor-trailer that was loaded with 77,000 pounds of non-hazardous material.

“The tractor-trailer swerved to avoid a collision and struck a box truck in the rear,” Arnold said.

The 22-foot box truck tipped on its side on the right-hand side of the interstate, causing two lanes of westbound travel to again be shut down for about an hour. Traffic was backed up as far east as Exit 90 in Newton County.

HERO units came out to assist and traffic was rerouted onto secondary roads, which also became congested with commuters.

No charges have been filed in connection with either wreck.