Icy conditions major threat for motorists

Last updated: January 29. 2014 11:22AM - 10258 Views
By - mstrother@civitasmedia.com - 706-884-7311

LaGrange City workers give this driver an extra push today on Vernon Street.
LaGrange City workers give this driver an extra push today on Vernon Street.
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Snow and icy conditions contributed to numerous wrecks reported around Troup County Tuesday and today.

LaGrange police reported 12 wrecks around the city with four people injured. Most of the wrecks occurred on Lafayette Parkway, Mooty Bridge Road and South Davis Road.

The Georgia State Patrol, which covers Troup and Harris counties, reported 25 wrecks overall.

Vernon Street was closed Tuesday night and Wednesday morning to traffic in both directions due to people losing traction on the hill by LaGrange College. Traffic was diverted to Broad Street, where the road was sprayed with salt. City road crews were busy Tuesday applying salt to heavily traveled roads and the Georgia Department of Transportation was spraying Interstates 85 and 185, and other state highways.

According to Suzy Noles, director of Troup County 911 Emergency Center, Troup County 911 handled a total of 129 accident calls from 9:14 a.m Tuesday until 7 a.m. today. The major accidents occurred on Interstate 85 and Interstate 185. No fatalities were reported and only 13 people were transported to the hospital that were involved in accidents.

There were no reports of trees or limbs down, or any power outages.

According to Troup County Sheriff’s spokesman Stewart Smith, deputies responded to over 65 wrecks with eight injuries.

Hogansville Police reported no accidents.

West Point police responded to 24 wrecks with three injuries.

The extreme state of the roads made it tough for 911 personnel to respond quickly.

“Because of these icy conditions, it does take a bit longer to respond to calls,” said Dennis Knight, interim chief of the Troup County Fire Department.

Both LaGrange police and the Troup County Sheriff’s Office have issued warnings on their Facebook page for icy conditions, advising everyone to stay home and avoid the roads.

The Troup County School System sent students home Tuesday after the snowfall began. The schools remained closed today. LaGrange College, West Georgia Tech, LaGrange Academy and Lafayette Christian School also were closed today.

Several accidents were reported on Interstate 85 Tuesday.

Shortly before 1:15 p.m. Tuesday, a SUV overturned on an interstate median.

According to Georgia State Patrol, a blue Ford Explorer was traveling on I-85 northbound from the Kia plant when the vehicle drove over a patch of ice, causing it to fishtail and turn sideways where it was T-boned by an 18-wheel truck. The crash happened within a mile of Kia Parkway.

Cars lined the street as several passers-by pulled over to attempt to help. Firefighters turned the vehicle upright to free its occupants. A female driver and passenger were extricated from the vehicle.

Troopers also were investigating another wreck within half a mile north of the overturned SUV that slowed northbound traffic.

No major injuries were reported from the two wrecks near Kia and no further details were available this morning.

In another accident on I-85, a Ford Mustang traveling in the southbound lane near the weigh-in station flipped over into the median near mile marker 23. Also on I-85, in the northbound lane near mile marker 27, just south of Hogansville, a truck slid off the interstate and crashed into the woods.

According to troopers, both accidents were caused by ice in the roadway. No report was available regarding injuries.

In another incident, one man was taken to West Georgia Medical Center for injuries after the pickup truck he was driving toward Lafayette Parkway on South Davis Road slid on ice at a bridge over the railroad tracks. The vehicle slammed into a guardrail on the opposite side of the road, flipping onto its side.

LaGrange police were investigating the incident.

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