Maine State Police closed the southbound lanes of Interstate 295 near the Portland-Falmouth border around 9 p.m. Thursday so crews could remove a tractor-trailer that went off the highway in slippery conditions earlier in the day.

Nina Fisher, a spokeswoman for the Maine Department of Transportation, said late Thursday that the operation could take several hours.

Maine State Police will divert southbound traffic off the highway at Exit 10 in Falmouth. The highway could be closed two to three hours.

The big rig went off the snow-covered highway around 6:45 a.m., crashed through guardrails and came to rest upright on mud flats near the Falmouth exit, said Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

The driver, 34-year-old Henry Kabeta of Huntsville, Alabama, was not injured and wasn’t charged, but the accident backed up southbound commuter traffic for miles, said McCausland. Kabeta’s trailer was empty at the time of the crash, which happened north of Tukey’s Bridge.

The tractor-trailer crash was among several accidents reported after a few inches of powdery snow fell overnight in southern Maine.

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