The westbound lanes of Highway 1 in Langley have reopened after a pileup involving multiple semi-trucks sent four people to hospital and snarled traffic for more than nine hours.

In a statement issued Friday afternoon, the RCMP said the collision occurred shortly before 9:30 a.m. in the westbound lanes the highway near 245 Street.

“Four drivers--minor injuries, but they’ve all been taken to Langley hospital just for observation,” said Sgt. Roland Pierschke of the Port Mann RCMP.

Three semi-trucks and a minivan were involved in the pileup.

Images from the scene show overturned trailers and crumpled metal on either side of the highway.

“I was trapped in my truck because my doors wouldn’t open and then the firemen showed up and opened a cubby hole and I crawled through to get out,” said Ervin Gordon, whose semi-truck was rear-ended in the crash.

A five-tonne truck was also badly damaged in the incident.

“The van driver was sitting on the side (of the road) just vibrating and shaking. He was pretty shaken up. They took him away in an ambulance,” said semi driver Gerry McConnell, whose vehicle was also rear-ended.

"When you see those trucks coming in behind me, you're going, 'Oh crap. This isn't good,' " he said.

The westbound lanes of Highway 1 were closed between 264 Street and 248 Street. Drive BC warned commuters to expect major delays in the area.

The highway reopened at 6:30 p.m., but are expected to continue for several hours on Friday night.

The crash happened as traffic was slowing down.

Fire officials say they received a call about a smaller accident involving two vehicles before it turned into a major pileup.

It is unclear which vehicles were involved in the initial collision.

The pileup snarled traffic on Highway 1 for hours, causing frustration among drivers in the area.

“It’s like the Bermuda Triangle from 248 to 232 (streets),” said stranded motorist Neil Polvi.

Shortly before 10 a.m., RCMP responded to another crash in the westbound lanes of the highway, about 200 metres west of 264 Street.

That collision involved two vehicles and sent three people to hospital with minor injuries.

It is unclear if the two crashes are connected, the RCMP said. The cause of both incidents is still under investigation.

According to the province, environmental emergency response officers are investigating reports of spilled diesel on the road as a result of the collision.

With files from CTV’s Michele Brunoro