Big Des Moines accidents on first big workday of 2018

posted by Gary Barrett -

An 11-car accident on I-235 blocked access to the freeway from the Penn Avenue exit westbound to the 3rd street exit.

With temperatures too cold for salt to work, bridges and overpasses in the Des Moines metro were icing up Tuesday morning...causing spin-outs and crashes on the I-235 overpass over the Des Moines River and 3rd Street.

The city's contracted tow service, Crow Towing, only had two drivers out at the time, and had to bring in drivers to handle the sheer number of vehicles that needed to be towed from the area.

It began after 5:30am with multiple accidents on the I-235 overpass bridges just west of the East University on-ramp.  Traffic backed up quickly all the way back to University.  Then, around 6am icy conditions prompted an 11-car pileup on the overpass between the Des Moines River and 3rd Street on westbound I-235.

Accidents were starting to mount around 7:20am on the eastbound side of I-235 on the Des Moines River bridge as workers headed downtown and to the state capital complex.