When you think of the term “road trip” you don’t think about having to spend the night on the road…literally. Unfortunately, this is what many drivers in North Texas had to endure as Sunday’s winter blast of cold air and precipitation caused highways to become so icy that they were impassible. In fact, traffic on I-45, the main corridor between Dallas and Houston was at a standstill, with some drivers being on the road all night.
According to weather reports, nearly two inches of sleet fell around the region, which prompted hundreds of schools to cancel classes for the day. Additionally, 300 flights were canceled at DFW airport.
Some reports indicated that the traffic backup extended 15 miles from Corsicana to Fairfield. Apparently patches of ice prevented semi-trucks from travelling up steep grades. When the trucks couldn’t move, traffic simply stopped. Traffic on I-20 between Dallas and Shreveport, Louisiana was equally troublesome, however the Texas Department of Transportation reported that traffic was moving ever so slightly.
The latest round of winter misery reinforced the theme we have highlighted in a number of our posts: that drivers must slow down when roads become icy. The sheets of black ice that form on highways are unforgiving, and drivers of all skill levels have the potential of being in a black ice related crash. If reasonable care is not used, chances are that a crash will occur.
The silver lining in the entire ordeal is that it will be over fairly soon. The forecast calls for warmer weather as the week goes on.
Source: NBC DFW.com “Old man winter takes another swipe at Texas,” Mar. 3, 2014