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Charlotte traffic: Wreck blocks lanes on I-85 north in Gaston County

Multi Vehicle Accident On I-85

Several vehicles were involved in an accident early Wednesday morning on I-85 northbound at exit 23.
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Several vehicles were involved in an accident early Wednesday morning on I-85 northbound at exit 23.

A multi-vehicle wreck involving trucks and cars blocked the right and center lanes of Interstate 85 northbound near the McAdenville Road exit in Gaston County Wednesday morning, causing hours-long delays.

The wreck happened about 7:20 a.m., initially closing all northbound lanes. Lanes were still blocked at noon. U.S. 74, which parallels the interstate, also was jammed with motorists getting off the highway.

The wreck was the second of the morning causing headaches on I-85 in Gaston County.

At the U.S. 321 exit in Gastonia, traffic backed up after a motorist headed the wrong way on the interstate.

Driver Ray Leach told the Observer the wrong-way motorist passed within inches of his car. Leach said he was southbound on I-85 when the wrong-way motorist suddenly appeared off U.S. 321. Leach said he and other motorists immediately pulled to the right side of the interstate to avoid a collision.

WSOC-TV identified the wrong-way driver as Kenneth Meaders.

Meaders was placed in the Gaston County Jail on $50,000 bail, jail records show. He was charged with nine traffic and drug counts, including reckless driving to endanger and driving the wrong way.

A water main break, meanwhile, closed the northbound lane of Berryhill Road in west Charlotte Wednesday morning. The road was closed at Drum Street, near Tuckaseegee Road, so crews could repair the break.

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067, @jmarusak

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