A serious accident at the start of the Wednesday afternoon commute caused miles-long backups on the southbound Garden State Parkway.

State Police spokesman Trooper Lawrence Peele said an accident involving two vehicles at milepost 96.3 on the border of  Monmouth and Ocean counties closed the road for a time as a medical helicopter landed.

According to Peele, the State Police investigation determined that the driver of a flat bed truck heading south came upon stopped traffic and went into the right lane to avoid hitting traffic in front of him. He wound up going off the road and hitting the guard rail causing the truck to overturn.

The bed became separated from the cabin, striking a Chevrolet pickup truck and ejecting the driver of the flatbed, which landed on its driver. "There's still plenty of other factors to be determined" with the accident according to Peele, who said many drivers stopped to help after the accident took place.

The flatbed driver was taken by medical helicopter to Jersey Shore Medical Center. Police said that person is in critical condition. Two other people suffered back and leg injuries and were hospitalized via ambulance.

All lanes on the Parkway were reopened after 7 p.m. Peele did not disclose the identities of anyone involved with the accident. No charges have yet been filed.

New Jersey Fast Traffic's Bob Williams said Route 18 southbound, Route 34 southbound from the Parkway into Wall, Route 35 through Wall and Spring Lake and Routes 70  in Wall and Brick are all picked up extra alternative traffic. "It's all people trying to bail on the Parkway but they're running into more local delays. It's just a frustrating afternoon commute on the Shore," said Williams.

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