Local News

Perdue lifts snowstorm state of emergency

Posted January 21, 2009
Updated March 9, 2009

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— It was smooth sailing on most interstates and major roads Wednesday, the morning after a storm dumped up to 6 inches on central and eastern North Carolina.

Slush and ice, though, made for slippery conditions on secondary, rural and neighborhood roads Wednesday, and more than 800 schools and businesses closed their doors or opened late.

As temperatures rose and snow began to melt, Gov. Bev Perdue lifted a state of emergency, and the state shut its Emergency Operations Center in the early afternoon. Perdue had declared the state of emergency Tuesday as her seventh executive order, enabling the state to help emergency responders.

Get tips for driving on slick roads.

Drivers look out for slush, ice after storm Drivers look out for slush, ice after storm

By noon, authorities had not reported any major wrecks or problems on the roads.

Raleigh police responded to 10 wrecks between 4 a.m. and 10 a.m. From 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, they went to more than 100 wrecks.

Cary officials said that most of the town's roads were in good shape and road crews were hitting icy spots on a case-by-case basis. Motorists can report slick spots by calling 919-469-4090.

A car ran off windy, hilly Optimist Farm Road, forcing its temporary closure. Cary sent out a truck to clear the state-maintained road.

Slow-moving, cautious drivers formed a 3-mile back-up on N.C. Highway 55 in Apex and Holly Springs.

A slushy mess formed on downtown Raleigh streets where tall buildings blocked the sun's melting rays.

WRAL viewer Bill Coggin sent in pictures of a boat left high and dry in the median of Interstate 95, near U.S. Highway 64, in Rocky Mount. The truck towing it jackknifed, Coggin said, and the boat came off its trailer.

While Delta Airlines canceled three early morning flights, the runways were dry at Raleigh-Durham International Airport, and other airlines operated on a normal schedule. For flight info, visit the airlines' Web sites, call the flight reservation numbers or visit www.rdu.com.

Transportation officials had feared that overnight temperatures in the teens would cause extensive black ice, which forms when snow melts, forms a thin layer of water on roadways and then re-freezes. It can be nearly impossible for drivers to spot in time to slow down.

“The biggest mistake that's occurring today – and it's the one that occurs every time we have an event like this – is people are simply traveling too fast for the roadway conditions,” Highway Patrol spokesman Capt. Everett Clendenin said Tuesday.

Road crews worked overnight and through the morning to lay down salt and sand, hoping to avoid a repeat of Tuesday when troopers responded to more than 2,500 wrecks statewide.

Edward Wayne Dudley, 57, of Creedmoor, died when he lost control of his vehicle due to ice and snow and hit a tree on S.R. 1618, 5 miles south of Oxford, Tuesday afternoon.

On Tuesday, troopers responded to 717 weather-related wrecks in Triangle counties.


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  • speedy Jan 22, 2009

    Yeah, I hear you. But when the boss calls and chastises you for not being there and not-so-subtly indicates it affects your position and possible advancement, among other things, there's a problem. Policy doesn't mean jack when management doesn't adhere to it.

  • killerkestrel Jan 22, 2009

    Speedy, my understanding is that NCDOT was operating under the Adverse Weather and Emergency Closings Policy.

    "The adverse weather policy is designed to guarantee that our human resources system adheres to the doctrine of public accountability while ensuring that employees, who are not in mandatory operations, have the flexibility to determine whether it is safe to report to work. By giving these employees the option to report to work, charge time lost to leave, or make up the lost time, we balance the need to be responsible stewards of the taxpayer’s funds with the overriding interest in the safety of our employees."

    So if you can't make it to work due to snow (not school or day care being closed), you can either take vacation time or maybe work longer hours later.

  • speedy Jan 21, 2009

    What I'm saying is, if the plans for a bridge to be built 5 years from now are delayed one day, but the person designing it hits a State Trooper on the way to work during a "stated emergency" and against the wishes of the HP, does that make sense? The "stay home" order should apply to state employees too if their job description warrants it.

  • woodrowboyd2 Jan 21, 2009

    goverment funding is why she declared a state of emergency
    come on bev knows all the ropes to getting money

  • woodrowboyd2 Jan 21, 2009

    wonder how much of a brain a person needs to lift a snowstorm advisory when it wasnt even close to being one

  • CozyCake Jan 21, 2009

    Hey I was just impressed that in the short time that Perdue has been govennor that I have seen her at work and reaching out more than the previous administration did. I didn't vote for her but I think she at least wants to be involved in the workings of the state.

  • gr Jan 21, 2009

    Non-essential personnel probably refers to purchasing; accounting; payroll; secretaries, etc.....the people behind the scenes - not everyone is a driver and non essential personnel are not necessarily non productive. is your position/job essential to the daily operations of your company especially in an "emergency" situation (i.e. DOT snowplow drivers; LEO, etc) if not you are probably non-essential personnel too. also the governor declares a state of emergency only so she can activate national guard troops and the like......suppose the situation had turned very wintry like 4 years ago, then every one of you would be screaming if she had not declared it. it does not a general emergency, it is a preparatory stage.

  • nufsaid Jan 21, 2009

    "The HP and governor say stay home, but the managers at DOT are insisting thier non-essential people get their rear to work. What's up with that?
    It would be great if the non-essential state employees would actually put in some productive work. Even when the streets are clear. Lots of productive state employees, just a small percentage.

  • 68_polara Jan 21, 2009

    Declaring a state of emergency for 2-4 inches of snow is like going to the hospital because of a nose bleed. Silly...why does the state government do it?

  • whatelseisnew Jan 21, 2009

    I had to drive in today. back roads were mostly okay. People get pretty good separation. Only had one instance of a driver that was doing the - I will only go 10 miles per hour because I am terrified" trick. I wish those types would stay off the roads along with the ones that drive too fast. On my route in I had to constantly adjust my speed because parts of the roadway was clear and other sections were sheets of ice. I did as I always do and rarely used my brakes. All in all it was an okay trip.