A fatal motorcycle crash and an unrelated suicide forced the closure of southbound Interstate 17 on Tuesday morning. (Source: CBS 5 News)
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
A fatal motorcycle crash and an unrelated suspected suicide forced the closure of southbound Interstate 17 at the Loop 101 Pima Freeway and closed a ramp leading onto I-17 Tuesday morning.
Department of Public Safety and the Arizona Department of Transportation were able to clear the scenes after about six hours and traffic was flowing again on all roadways at the intersection of I-17 and Loop 101 by 6:30 a.m. just before the morning rush-hour crush.
The bodies of the two victims were found after the northbound motorcyclist hit a wall on the westbound Loop 101 interchange about 12:30 a.m.
The motorcyclist's body stayed on the overpass but the motorcycle fell about 200 feet to Loop 101. A DPS officer said the motorcyclist was wearing a helmet, but didn't survive the fall.
No other vehicles were involved.
About 4 a.m., a second body was found. Investigators said they located an empty car that was still running on the eastbound 101 on-ramp to north I-17, and later found the victim laying below in a southbound I-17 HOV lane.
Investigators said they matched the person's identification to the registration of the car and believed it was a suicide unrelated to the motorcycle crash.
Southbound traffic was being diverted from I-17 to Loop 101, according to Tom Herrmann of the Arizona Department of Transportation.
The ramp from eastbound Loop 101 to northbound I-17 was closed, Herrmann said. He said there was no estimate when the lanes would re-open.
No other information was immediately available.
[Text BREAKING to 23765 to get news alerts on your mobile phone]
Stay with cbs5az.com and CBS 5 News as this story develops.
Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
Wednesday, March 12 2014 6:23 AM EDT2014-03-12 10:23:25 GMT
Errico Auricchio produced cheese with his family in Italy until he brought his trade to the United States more than 30 years ago. Now, the European Union is saying his cheese isn't authentic enough toMore >
Errico Auricchio produced cheese with his family in Italy until he brought his trade to the United States more than 30 years ago. Now, the European Union is saying his cheese isn't authentic enough to carry a European name.More >
Tuesday, March 11 2014 4:13 PM EDT2014-03-11 20:13:53 GMT
Customers with Verizon Wireless have been the target of scammers, officials said.The scammers were promising people $54 dollars based on an overpaid bill. They even make it look like it's coming from Verizon'sMore >
Customers with Verizon Wireless have been the target of scammers, officials said.More >
Wednesday, March 12 2014 8:33 AM EDT2014-03-12 12:33:21 GMT
The Middletown Police Department is investigating after two motor vehicle's belonging to city resident were spray painted with racial slur. On Monday and on Tuesday, police said two separate vehicles wereMore >
A Middletown woman's cars were spray-painted with racial slurs on multiple occasions, according to police.More >
Tuesday, March 11 2014 7:46 PM EDT2014-03-11 23:46:12 GMT
Steve Irwin was killed by a stingray more than seven years ago, off the northeastern coast of Australia. The only witness to Irwin's death shared his story for the first time.Irwin was known around theMore >
Steve Irwin was killed by a stingray more than seven years ago, off the northeastern coast of Australia. The only witness to Irwin's death shared his story for the first time.More >
Wednesday, March 12 2014 9:39 AM EDT2014-03-12 13:39:27 GMT
A winter weather advisory was issued for the state's northern counties from 10 p.m. Wednesday through Noon on Thursday.Over the next 36 hours, Connecticut could see an assortment of weather as a stormMore >
A winter weather advisory was issued for the state's northern counties from 10 p.m. Wednesday through noon on Thursday.More >
Wednesday, March 12 2014 11:46 AM EDT2014-03-12 15:46:16 GMT
A building explosion in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan has halted Metro-North service in Harlem, officials said.Fire officials said the explosion happened in the area of 116th Street and Park Avenue.Metro-NorthMore >
A possible building explosion in the East Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan left one person dead and halted Metro-North service in Harlem, officials said.More >
Tuesday, March 11 2014 6:04 PM EDT2014-03-11 22:04:32 GMT
Police identified the two women found dead in a running motor vehicle in Lebanon Monday morning. Troopers were called to Smith Road near Route 207 around 8:50 a.m. after a person reported seeing two peopleMore >
Police identified the couple found dead in a running motor vehicle in Lebanon Monday morning.More >