Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Terrible Driving Conditions

The day started with the bus sliding to a stop on our very icy road. I immediately reassured myself that the roads must be the worst where we are and that my drive to work would not be bad. Boy was I wrong.

I am not exaggerating when I say that probably about 75-80% of the "city" road that leads to the highway I drive often was a sheet of ice. If it were not for occasional patches of pavement the car would have just slowly slid of off the road. Several instances of the car slightly gliding away from the center line toward the shoulder (and only going about 25 mph) made me think I would soon need a tow truck. I eventually made it to the highway and saw that it was clear.

...Or so I thought.

I have heard of black ice and seen plenty of road conditions that were slick and treacherous but I have never experienced driving like I had this morning.

Most of the road looked dry with only rare patches of what looked like snow. The fact is that most of the road was coated completely with a thin icy sheet. It only vaguely sparkled like new fallen snow. Most of the road was the expected dull gray.

Once again I was going about 30 mph driving past people in the ditch and a surprising number of overturned SUVs. One of the accidents looked particularly nasty and I truly hope that the passengers were okay. I eventually got to work intact.

My way home was the real challenge. Snow had been drifting as the wind picked up and the temperature is too low for salt to work and maintenance trucks had just been dropping sand. The end of my day driving was the worst I can remember. The road was still mostly ice but now worsened by the drifting snow, the sun going down, and the temperature staying so cold everything was just shades of gray. The sky and the road blended together and each side of the road was little more than a graveyard for cars that did not make it. There was a point in the road that I was worried that I would either hit one of the abandoned cars that lay facing all sorts of directions or the oncoming traffic.

I officially hate winter.

1 comment:

Steph said...

It was 67 degrees today. :)