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I-45 North Freeway reopens following deadly multi-vehicle pileup in Montgomery County, DPS says

The freeway was closed in both directions for several hours after a series of events led to a deadly motorcycle crash and a multiple-car pileup near SH 242.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas — The I-45 North Freeway is back open in both directions at State Highway 242 in Montgomery County following a series of events that led to a deadly multi-vehicle crash late Tuesday night, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

According to Houston Transtar, the freeway reopened at 4:35 a.m. Wednesday after all of the main lanes were closed since 11:18 p.m. Tuesday. The series of crashes covered half a mile.

What happened

According to DPS State Troopers, this all started when a motorcycle heading north sped past a trooper on I-45 who was writing a ticket. The motorcyclist tried to exit the freeway onto the feeder road and was hit by a Lexus pulling out of a parking lot of the Metro Park Center. The rider was thrown off the bike into a ditch and killed. The rider has since been identified as 27-year-old Oliver James Shaw of New Caney, Texas.

The motorcycle kept going without the rider and crossed back up onto the freeway hitting several cars, leading to a multi-car pileup, DPS said. 

The department said a Chevrolet Malibu and Audi A4 pulled in front of the motorcycle and parked to try and perform traffic control. DPS said a Toyota Corolla driving northbound on the freeway hit the bike, Audi and Chevrolet.

The driver of the Chevrolet, Lucas Paul Wegener, 23, of Conroe Texas, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the Audi was uninjured and the driver of the Toyota was taken to the hospital and is reportedly stable.

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