Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

January 14, 2013

Winter weather catches motorists off guard

By Bob Belcher
Corsicana Daily Sun

Corsicana — An overnight wintery mix of weather left many roadways in Navarro County slippery with a thin coat of ice and sleet, and many motorists with an unexpected delay.

County law enforcement personnel worked numerous accidents along Interstate 45 through Navarro County early Monday, with reports of accidents stretching much of the highway’s 30 mile stretch through the county.

The wintry mix of rain, sleet and ice pellets began falling bout 4 a.m. Monday, and left exposed bridges and overpasses coated with a slippery, slushy mix that spawned several accidents.

City police, county deputies, fire and rescue personnel and Texas Department of Public Safety troopers worked non-stop through the morning hours attending to the crashes on the highway, ranging from cars slipping off the road into the median or ditch, up to an 6-car collision and a 4-car collision just north of Corsicana on the Chambers Creek bridges.

For a time, southbound traffic on Interstate 45 was shut down while crews worked to clear the wreckage from the highway. Northbound traffic also slowed to a crawl at times as tow trucks and police officers worked the numerous accidents.

“Sheriff’s deputies responded to about nine accidents this morning, mainly on the Interstate,” Navarro County Sheriff Elmer Tanner said. He said most of the crashes appeared to be as a result of the wintry mix of weather that coated the highway. TxDOT was notified of the road conditions, Tanner said.

Corsicana Police Chief Randy Bratton said his officers were also busy in a support role with DPS working Interstate crashes, including a one-car crash near the 231 mile marker in which a northbound vehicle lost control, flipped over the median and ended up in the southbound lanes.

“There were also some other minor accidents in the city,” Bratton added.

The weather event was part of a larger winter wave of weather that brought snowfall to areas of north Texas just north of Navarro County, stretching to the north and east of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. While there was no major snowfall, the sleet and icy mix left by the storm made for dangerous driving conditions across a large area of north Texas Monday morning.

Another round of rain is possible this week, forecasters say.

The area can expect rain chances to increase Wednesday night into Thursday morning, with temperatures falling into the lower 30’s Thursday morning.

    —————

Want to “Soundoff” on this story? Email: soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com