Jessica Mathews /

A crash shut down US-23 and snarled traffic for six hours in the Hartland Township area late Tuesday afternoon.

Deputies with the Livingston County Sheriff's Office were dispatched shortly after 4:30pm to a multi-vehicle crash involving semi-tractor trailers and a passenger vehicle on southbound US-23 at Crouse Road.

Preliminary investigation revealed that traffic on southbound US-23 had stopped due to congestion on the highway. The Office says a 2007 Freightliner semi-tractor trailer hauling automobile parts was traveling south when he rear-ended a 2015 Dodge Caravan that was stopped. The Freightliner pushed the Caravan off the roadway, which was being operated by a 33-year-old Grand Blanc man.

After the initial impact with the Caravan, the Freightliner continued south on the roadway until it rear-ended an empty 2014 International Harvester semi-tractor and trailer that was being operated by a 58-year-old Gaylord man. The International Harvester semi-tractor was then forced into the rear end of a fully loaded 2020 Freightliner semi-tractor and trailer operated by a 56-year-old Flint man.

The Sheriff’s Office says the 2007 Freightliner operator suffered serious injuries and was transported to the U of M Hospital in Ann Arbor by Livingston County EMS in critical condition. The Dodge Caravan operator was also transported to the U of M Hospital by Livingston County EMS in good condition.

The drivers of the International Harvester and 2020 Freightliner were not injured.

All drivers were wearing their seat belts at the time of the crash. Police say alcohol and speed do not appear to be factors in the crash.

The freeway was closed for approximately six hours during the investigation and extensive cleanup.

The crash remains under investigation by the Livingston County Sheriff's Office Traffic Safety Division.

Deputies were assisted on the scene by Hartland Area Fire Department, MDOT Courtesy Patrol, Michigan State Police Motor Carrier, and Livingston County EMS.