Just prior to 3 a.m., police and cleanup crews were called to an off-ramp on Interstate 580 in the Altamont Pass after a westbound vehicle crashed into a dump truck pulling out of a construction zone. A tractor-trailer filled with pallets of bananas swerved to avoid the crash, driving onto a median, where it overturned and caught fire.
No one was seriously injured but the ensuing cleanup lasted until nearly 10 a.m., creating massive traffic jams stretching for 21 miles both on the highway and surface roads.
"People need to listen to traffic reports and sometimes you just can't get there," California Highway Patrol officer Steve Creel told ABC Bay Area.
"Sometimes it's just not a viable option. In this case, with the Interstate 580 westbound commute shut down, all the alternate roads were also jam-packed. There was no way, from this area, to get from the Central Valley into the Bay Area without committing a lot of time."