Wasn’t it yjust a couple weeks back that the Ballard administration was bragging about buying new salt trucks! The Star tells us the result:
First snow brings road troubles
8:50 AM — Police call for salt trucks, wreckers
Police and firefighters keep rushing to traffic accidents as the slippery driving conditions don’t get any better.
The wrecks are happening on two-lane roads, such as Fox Road near Grandview and Tibbs Avenue at Vermont Street. They’re happening on interstate highways, including I-70 east of the Marion County-Hendricks County line and I-465 at 21st Street on the Eastside. Cars are hitting utility poles in places such as 16th Street and Franklin Road.
And on Sherman Drive at Hanna Avenue, a place which usually poses no problems to traffic, buses are not able to get up an incline. Police are asking for salt trucks to help at that location, and in many other places such as Crawfordsville Road west of High School Road. Officers also are calling for wreckers to clean up after wrecks, only to learn they’re going to have long waits.
Most Indianapolis-area schools are open.
Utility crews from IPL also are busy checking places where utility lines were knocked down, to see if power lines were damaged. Those power crews are also in heavy demand and there are long delays for their services.
The Department of Public Works had 37 plows and salt trucks pre-treating the roads at 3 a.m., an hour before the snow began. However, cold temperatures meant that the first wave of traffic compressed the half-inch of snow on the roads into ice, which has led to the problems with driving.
“What we’re really stressing this morning is that folks just slow down,” said Steven R. Hardiman II, DPW spokesman. “We’ve got some commuters who are driving too fast for these icy streets.”
Today’s snow is the first to fall in Indianapolis since a trace of snow on April 21. The last measurable snow was 1.2 inches that fell from Feb. 21-22.
This is also the first snowfall for an Indianapolis government web site at http://www.indysnowforce.com/ where people can report intersections that are extremely icy.
ALO suggests everyone take advantage of that fancy new website to tell the Colonel how poorly his troops handled this. The cops can tell you how bad a failure this is:
All traffic, regardless of location in the Indianapolis area, is moving at a crawl. Officers are pleading for salt trucks to help improve traffic.
The deceptively slick conditions are making traction a premium on every road in the area. Places which have had little bad weather trouble in the past, such as Millersville Road at Emerson Avenue, are all but shut down because drivers can’t get the traction they need on an incline.
Where drivers can move forward, they’ve found that roads are too slippery to allow much control. Police are reporting many accidents where utility poles have been struck and wires knocked down.
One place where that’s happened is on Lantern Road at Sargent Road near Lawrence, where utility lines fell on a school bus after a collision with a SUV. Police report they’re waiting until they’re sure the power to those lines has been shut off before taking students off the bus.
The snow has nearly stopped, but temperatures remain below freezing, keeping roads slippery. The National Weather Services predicts the high temperature will be 37, which will not come close to melting the snow and ice until long after the morning rush hour is over.