Massive pileup in Wisconsin caught on video

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RAW: Video captures Hwy 41/45 pileup

RAW: Video captures Hwy 41/45 pileup

The snowy weather that has affected much of the country over the past week has produced a remarkable traffic video. A massive pileup in Wisconsin involved between two dozen and 50 vehicles, according to various sources, and can now be seen via a Wisconsin Department of Transportation video.

Five-minute pileup

The multicar pileup happened Sunday around 11 a.m. near Germantown, Wisconsin, along highway 41/45. It was caught on video by a Wisconsin Department of Transportation traffic camera. By the time of the accident, enough snow, ice, and slush had accumulated to blanket the highway. Visibility was also low, with snow coming down.

The video starts with a few cars speeding through snowy conditions and rear-ending cars in front of them. Eventually, the highway turns into almost a parking lot of collisions.

Besides the excessive speeds for the wintry road conditions, the video also shows motorists getting out of their vehicles and standing on the highway as more cars continue to smash into vehicles sitting on the road. More cars approach the scene with nothing warning them of what's ahead, leaving drivers without enough time to stop before plowing into standing vehicles, ditches, and fences.

Germantown police officer Tim Miller, who witnessed the pileup, told WISN Milwaukee, "If people watch NASCAR, and they watch the Daytona 500 or Talledega, where they wait for what's called the Big Crash, where all the cars crash because they're all so close together, that's what this was like -- only there was nobody there to stop it with a yellow flag and slow all the other cars down."

In a post on Facebook, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation warned, "You see people getting out of their cars -- with the desire to make sure others were OK -- but this is extremely dangerous. The video shows many people nearly hit by vehicles."

The accident took several hours to clear and coincided with another pileup involving almost 40 cars on the same highway near Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, reports WISN, which resulted in one death. Between the two situations, 911 operators were overloaded with calls.

The pileup caught on video caused 12 injuries and no deaths, reports WLUK-TV Fox 11.

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