The mishap involved a state patrol cruiser that was parked along the right side of the highway.

JACKSON TWP.  Traffic in the southbound lanes of Interstate 77 was in a gridlock Thursday afternoon as the Ohio Highway Patrol worked to clear a crash scene involving eight vehicles.

The portion of the interstate effected was the nearly one-mile stretch between the Portage Street NW and Shuffel Street NW interchanges.

The mishap involved a state patrol cruiser parked along the right side of the highway. Trooper Robert Chapman was investigating a two-vehicle crash that took place shortly before 12:30 p.m. Thursday.

At about 1:15 p.m. six other vehicles became involved in a crash just north of where the state trooper was parked. Forward momentum of a tractor-trailer forced that vehicle to strike a concrete barrier on the side of the interstate, according to state troopers. The tractor-trailer bounced off the barrier and rammed into the rear of the cruiser.

Several people were injured, including Chapman. None of the injuries were life-threatening, according to the patrol.

The southbound lanes of Interstate 77 were closed with traffic stopped for about an hour. As of Thursday evening, state troopers did not additional details of the crash.

There were several other collisions behind the main crash, but it was not clear how many vehicles were involved.

All injuries were believed to be non-life-threatening, according to Jackson Township Police and an Ohio State Highway Patrol dispatcher.

Southbound traffic was diverted at the Shuffel Road exit. By 5 p.m., all three lanes had reopened.

Traffic in the northbound lanes also were slowed by the crash. Check back for more details as they become available.