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I-435 back open in Lenexa after deadly crash

Posted at 6:03 AM, Aug 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-15 13:09:39-04

LENEXA, Kan. — All lanes of I-435 near 87th Street and Midland Dr. are now open after a deadly crash.

The highway was closed for several hours Wednesday, affecting morning rush hour traffic.

Drivers were advised to use Shawnee Mission Parkway, K-7, or K-10 to get around the closure.

The Kansas Highway Patrol stated a pickup truck driver was driving the wrong way on the southbound lanes of I-435. That's when the driver hit a semi-truck head-on. 

The driver of the pickup died. 

There was a large amount of debris from the crash that impacted another car driving in the southbound lanes. 

No one else was injured. 

KHP Lt. Jason Wohlgemuth said KHP had a forensic mapping team out to map out the scene, which is partially why the roadways were shut down for so long.

"Anytime we have a fatality accident of this nature, involving a commercial motor vehicle, we do activate our chart team, which is our critical highway accident response team," Wohlgemuth said. "And they'll come out and do a forensic map and reconstruct the scene as far as location of vehicles and physical evidence that's located on the scene and roadway."

Wohlgemuth said it’s unclear why the driver was driving in the wrong lane.

"First, we think was the driver impaired, does he know the roadway, was he from the area? We look into that to see if he was familiar with the roadway and also we look to see if it was a possible suicide," Wohlgemuth said. 

The crash is still under investigation.