I-95 Piscataqua River Bridge reopens. Man in distress in custody.

Emergency crews respond to a person under the Interstate 95 Piscataqua River Bridge overpass linking Portsmouth to Kittery, Maine, Thursday, May 5, 2022.

PORTSMOUTH — Law enforcement agencies took a New Hampshire man in distress on the Piscataqua River Bridge on Interstate 95 into custody late Thursday morning, reopening the bridge after its closure snarled traffic for hours.

Maine State Police and local emergency agencies began interacting with the man, whose name was not released, around 6:30 am, according to the State Police spokesperson Shannon Moss. The northbound and southbound lanes were closed, causing major delays on the highway during the morning commute.

Just after 11 am, after responding agencies spent multiple hours on scene, the man was safely taken safely into protective custody and transported to a local hospital.

Moss explained that the safety hazard caused by the traffic backup will lead to a review on whether charges could be filed.

“Once completed the report on this incident will be submitted to the York County District Attorney’s Office,” Moss said.

All lanes on the high-level bridge, one of three that connects Portsmouth to Kittery, Maine, were reopened after being shut down.

Traffic backed up as the Interstate 95 Piscataqua River Bridge connecting Portsmouth and Kittery, Maine, was shut down Thursday morning, May 5, 2022, due to a person reported to be in distress under the bridge's overpass.

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The hours-long emergency response created immense traffic backup in the region. According to Moss, at its peak, traffic in Maine was backed up six miles as law enforcement agencies encouraged drivers to seek alternate routes.

Emergency crews respond to a person under the Interstate 95 Piscataqua River Bridge overpass linking Portsmouth to Kittery, Maine, Thursday, May 5, 2022.

Assisting Maine State Police in the response were New Hampshire State Police, the fire and police departments from Portsmouth, the Maine Turnpike Authority and the New Hampshire Department of Transportation.

Emergency crews respond to a person under the Interstate 95 Piscataqua River Bridge overpass linking Portsmouth to Kittery, Maine, Thursday, May 5, 2022.

This story may be updated.

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Emergency crews respond to a person under the Interstate 95 Piscataqua River Bridge overpass linking Portsmouth to Kittery, Maine, Thursday, May 5, 2022.

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