Fog clings to Triangle, holds down temperatures

Posted December 14, 2009

— Multiple wrecks were reported Monday morning, when dense fog caused low visibility and WRAL viewers said they encountered icy patches on roads north of the Triangle.

Fog reduced visibility to between zero and a quarter-mile in some areas, WRAL meteorologist Nate Johnson said. North of Durham, temperatures dipped below freezing, allowing moisture to freeze, mostly on bridges and overpasses.

At noon, visibility in Raleigh was still only about three-quarters of a mile. Most of the fog had lifted by 3 p.m. and some parts of the Triangle saw a bit of sun Monday afternoon, Johnson said.

A tractor-trailer overturned on U.S. Highway 401 South, near Perry Creek Road, Raleigh police spokesman Jim Sughrue said. Traffic was detoured onto Ligon Mill Road for about two hours. Sughrue said there were no serious injuries.

Earlier, heavy fog and a wreck slowed traffic along Interstate 40 East, between mile markers 274 and 276 in Durham County, transportation officials said.

A wreck also shut down I-40 West, at the U.S. Highway 70 Bypass, near the Wake-Johnston county line during part of the morning rush hour.

WRAL viewers reported that ice was making roads in northern Granville County dangerous and that trucks were putting down salt. Schools in Mecklenburg County, Va., were put on two-hour delay to the fog and potential for icy bridges.

"With that thick fog which is widespread across the entire viewing area, you want to give yourself plenty of extra time this morning," WRAL traffic reporter Brian Shrader said.

In thick fog, drivers should slow down, use their low-beam lights, and leave plenty of distance between vehicles.

Johnson said dense fog and clouds were keeping temperatures down. In Boone, where skies had cleared by mid-day, temperatures had risen into the upper 50s. But in the Raleigh area, the mercury was having trouble rising beyond about 45 degrees.


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  • time4real Dec 14, 2009

    i'm not surprised that Giddy got yet another forecast wrong. 65 my goose! and the record is, 3 of 422 correct forecasts!

  • Claude626 Dec 14, 2009

    I am from the UK, driving in adverse conditions is a daily routine during winter, I was truly amazed this morning to see how many fools were out there driving with no lights on, I do wonder what goes on in their minds that makes them miss such a fundamental need. It does seem that a majority of people have relegated the task of driving their vehicles to that of others....

  • nicolle Dec 14, 2009

    I was also amazed at how many people did not have their headlights ON on Sunday while it was raining. (It's a law that if the windshield wipers are on, the lights should be as well.) So sadly, I wasn't too suprised to see so many people again with their headlights not on. I would say about 1/3 of drivers yesterday and this morning. :(

  • Commonscents Dec 14, 2009

    Bluepirate - I was not pointing to anyone specific, southerners, northerners, kids, elderly, dogs, cats, etc. There are just a lot of wrecks in this area on a daily basis versus other areas of the country that I've lived. I leave it to everyone else to figure out why.. FWIW, I've been on the road for 22 years without so much as a moving violation and certainly have not crashed into anyone. It looked like the tractor trailer driver was taking a corner too fast.

  • 007KnightRider Dec 14, 2009

    If you car is equipped with fog lights use them!!

  • jrfergerson Dec 14, 2009

    smcallah - I have to agree with you and NEinGarner on so many idiots this morning with no headlights on - they are asking for a car wreck. I see this all the time when it is raining also. And to take the time to put on your turn signal before you turn shows how thoughtless of others on the road they are.

  • smcallah Dec 14, 2009

    What is the deal with all the idiots this morning with no headlights on?

    I can't even see the stop lights more than 300ft ahead of me that are brighter than most tail lights. And you don't even have your lights on in the first place?

  • NEinGarner Dec 14, 2009

    I was surpised how many people were driving without their lights on this morning. It's not safe to drive in stealth mode.

  • DowntownGirl Dec 14, 2009

    Commonscents, do you know how many people in this "area of the country" aren't from this area of the country? I wonder who lacks the driving skills?

  • djcgriffin Dec 14, 2009

    Commonscents - Really????