Monday, November 22, 2010

You Think Winter Is Here...?

I don't know about you, but I think this must be some kind of record!

I know that for some folks this doesn't sound like a lot of wrecks, but to me the number shows that way too many folks don't pay attention to weather conditions when driving!

How many reminders do people that live in areas with road ice need? You would think by now they would know that Winter driving calls for extra caution. I guess that common sense is taking a holiday for the colder months!

More than 370 crashes in Minnesota blamed on icy weather

(CNN) -- Freezing rain and ice-covered roads made for a treacherous Saturday night in Minnesota, where more than 370 crashes were reported, most of them in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area, officials said Sunday. One person was killed.

"We had some rain, and as the temperature got below freezing, it created a layer of ice on the road," said Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske. "Until people hit it, they didn't realize it was out there. It was like an ice skating ring... everyone had a difficult time dealing with it."

Law enforcement continued to warn late Sunday about treacherous conditions, as roads ice up again overnight and more freezing precipitation moves in. A post on the state patrol's Twitter page read, "Many roads are still very icy (dangerous)."

A freezing rain advisory for the area expired 3 p.m. (4 p.m. ET) Sunday, but the National Weather Service issued another one in south and southeast Minnesota from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. CST on Monday as a low-pressure system moves across the region.

Forecasters predicted that ice as thick as one-tenth of an inch could accumulate on the state's roadways -- with bridges and overpasses especially susceptible.

Saturday night's fatality occurred in a crash on an ice-covered road, and weather was likely a factor, according to Roeske. Other possible factors in the crash were under investigation, he said.

More than 50 of the crashes on Saturday involved injuries. None of the injuries were categorized as serious, Roeske said, but there is a possibility that some could have been and that busy first responders did not classify them that way.

"Because it was an ice situation, it made it much worse than just a simple snowstorm," he said. "Over the course of just a couple of hours, it went from dry roads to wet. That ice is the problem because there's no way to distinguish it from the roadway."

The roads were so slippery that it was difficult to even walk, Roeske said. "Obviously, with that number of calls, it was something extreme to deal with. It was an incredibly busy and dangerous night."

As of Sunday morning, "We have problems keeping the plow trucks on the road," Carver County Sheriff Sgt. Dewitt Meier told the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star-Tribune. "The plow trucks keep going in the ditches."

A sheriff's department employee was involved in an accident on the way to work Sunday, but was not injured, Meier said.

"I can't say enough how any travel that isn't absolutely necessary is not advisable," he said.

Just how many times have we heard "Slow down in the icy weather"? In this case, I think that it should be just "slow down in the Winter".

You know, there are times that I'm actually glad I live in the deep south! This Winter is shaping up to be one of those times!

Now, my friends, let's get some fresh coffee and sit outside for a bit! No ice out here on the patio today!


Sixbears said...

That's the weather we are supposed to get here today. I don't have to go anywhere, so I won't. Good day to put the coffee perker on the woodstove and kick back with a good book.

Dizzy-Dick said...

Saturday night, right? How many of them had just left a bar having one more drink to take the chill out of their bones???

Ben in Texas said...

I still think that a Drivers IQ test should be administered to anyone wanting to drive a car.

JoJo said...

Good Morning My Special One,
Thats why I came back down the mountain for the winter. I came from NJ 36 yrs ago to get away from that kind of stuff. No People never learn. Here when we get the heavy rains the washes fill up fast and run hard the road in barracaded and people drive around them some never found and most drown. Sad very sad I agree about the IQ test.
We are still having chilly weather so sitting on the patio at your place sounds great.

Beth said...

What? Minnesota never had (or has) icy roads before? Having driven through Minneapolis-St. Paul myself, I can see why EXTRA precautions should be taken! I also think Dizzy-Dick probably has hit the nail on the head for more than one of these drivers!!
Love ya. Enjoy your "day after bd".

Beth said...

P.S. Good luck with up coming eye
surgery, too. I know it will
be as succesful as the last
and what could be better?!

Mechanic in Illinois said...

I'm glad I'm retired so I can stay home in bad weather. Sometimes age has it's advantage, not much except this situation. Thanks for the great info.

Bob Mc said...

Looking out my window - it sure looks like winter here. Everything is white!

We call those conditions "black ice". Looks just like wet pavement, then you hit it and WHOOPEE! Absolutely no control. I'm going to go into town today to pick up a turkey and some other things, but I'll wait until this afternoon when it has warmed up.

Anonymous said...

Much the same up here! How can people living where winter comes every year get surprised by it :-) :-) :-) Same thing every year!

Have a great day!
Christer, in a very snowy Sweden.

Kyddryn said...

It was 72 here today...what's Winter??

I do miss having seasons. When I lived in NH, we would often get first snowfall before Samhain/Halloween. While Autumn is my favorite, Winter comes a close second.

I hope you had a happy birthday, Mister Hermit, sir...

Shade and Sweettater,

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Hi HermitJim, seems I have some catching up to so here - tried to post a couple of times, but couldn't get the comments page to display - Computers $%#@!!
Belated birthday wishes. Good luck with the upcoming eye surgery.
Here on the VA eastern shore we don't get a lot of snow, but when even 1-2 inches falls there are delayed school openings and people get crazy thinking it's a lot of snow!