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Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Snow Demons

Posted January 4, 2011 10:59 a.m. EST

Did any of you get involved in the rash of weather related traffic accidents over the holidays that have repair shops experiencing more than a three week back-up? Before the holiday snowstorm becomes too distant of a memory I wanted to tell you about two frightening situations I encountered.

The first one occurred on the way to my sister's home north of Richmond, Virginia. It was still snowing but the major roads were mostly clear. Trouble is - the trees weren't clear! I usually enjoy the stretch of I-85 between South Hill and Petersburg because of the forested median. But those trees become a menace when the snow starts to melt as it did that Sunday afternoon. A gust of wind and warming temperatures triggered a mini avalanche on my car. It was one of the those heart thumping white-outs. Fortunately I was driving at a safe speed and the blinding swirl of snow dissipated after a short but intense prayer for help. I witnessed several accidents apparently caused by the same problem on the way to Petersburg.

After the Virginia trip our family headed south to Florida to celebrate the holidays with my daughter Lauren and her hubby Luke Wolf. Around Lumberton on I-95 I watched in horror as a SUV driver lost control and slid into the snowy median. The vehicle spun around twice on the icy turf and then bolted back across the northbound lanes of the busy interstate tail first. By the grace of God the vehicle avoided contact with a number of nearby cars and trucks and landed in a wooded area on the side of the road.

Do any of you have similar stories?