08/05/2016 11:38 EDT | Updated 08/05/2016 11:59 EDT

Coquihalla Crash: Highway Closed After Semi Smashes In 13 Vehicles

KAMLOOPS, B.C. - There were no fatal injuries Friday after a commercial transport truck crashed into more than a dozen vehicles on a busy highway in British Columbia's Interior.

RCMP spokeswoman Const. Melissa Wutke said one person with serious but non-life threatening injuries was airlifted to hospital following the crash on the Coquihalla Highway, between Hope and Merritt, B.C.

"A commercial transport vehicle travelling southbound on Highway 5 apparently was unable to stop, and collided with 13 other vehicles," Wutke said in a statement.

Six other patients were taken by ambulance in stable condition, BC Emergency Health Services says in a tweet.

The major artery between B.C.'s Interior and the southern coast was cut off southbound while 10 ground ambulances and other emergency vehicles rushed to the scene around 2:30 p.m.

Witness Norm Draeger says it appears that the semi-truck lost its brakes and barrelled down the hill in the southbound lanes. He says vehicles had been stopped on the highway because of construction.

"There was wrecked vehicles all over, people all over the road. It was just a mess," Draeger says.

Police and the province's ministry of transportation are now investigating why the truck failed to stop, Wutke said.

The provincial government says Highway 5 southbound was to remain closed at the Box Canyon chain-up area until late Friday night.

(CFJC, The Canadian Press)

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