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Woman killed in rollover crash on I-79 that caused major delays

Pennsylvania State Police confirmed a woman was killed in the northbound crash that happened minutes before a crash in the other direction on I-79.

A portion of Interstate 79 southbound and northbound were both shut down for more than an hour after two crashes just minutes apart Friday afternoon.

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PennDOT confirmed the first crash happened around 3:30 p.m. on I-79 north near Exit 78 (PA 228) – which is just past Cranberry.

According to police, a vehicle rolled over multiple times and landed in the median. At least one person was reportedly trapped in the vehicle and a medical helicopter was placed on standby.

State police later confirmed the woman who was driving that car died in the crash. She was identified as Cristi Reibert, 41. Reibert was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

The second crash was just two minutes later, officials said, on I-79 south between Exits 85 and 78.

Crews blocked both lanes heading south as they worked to clear the area. Part of the northbound side were temporarily shut down as well -- both sides were opened back up by 6:15 p.m.

The weather was just starting to turn over from rain to snow when the crashes on I-79 were reported. Investigators are looking into what went wrong but said it’s too soon to know if weather played a role.

Channel 11′s Amy Hudak reported traffic in both directions was backed up for miles. All access ramps to and from I-79 in that area were also blocked off.

State Police forensic units were at the scene investigating as well following the crashes.

Delays were felt from Wexford to Harmony. By the time I-79 reopened, a nasty wintry mix was coming down. PennDOT crews in Butler County had 44 trucks on the roads working to keep them clear as temperatures dipped near freezing.

They even used blue salt so drivers could see the roads were treated.

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