Local News

Wake, Chatham Schools Closed As Crews Continue To Clear Icy Roads

Posted January 7, 2002 4:48 a.m. EST

— More winter weather could be on its way Monday, as some flurries are expected. Meanwhile, Department of Transportation crews are still working to clear roads that are preventing schools in Wake, Chatham and several other local counties from opening.

The weather cooperated Sunday as rain melted many icy patches, but the overnight re-freezing created some problems.

Sunday's thaw, combined with Saturday's melting, allowed folks to venture out. While there were quite a few fender benders Saturday, no serious injuries were reported as a result of any weekend accidents.

Triangle residents hit the malls and the movie theatres Saturday once the sun helped melt their neighborhoods out of the deep freeze.

Sanitation crews from Raleigh, Cary, Durham and Fayetteville also picked up trash.

Troopers says higher temperatures and snow plows helped to clear roads in the state Friday afternoon and evening, and Saturday's sun melted much leftover ice.

The NC DOT had 30 trucks working the roads Friday night, including a 22-person crew from Wilmington that arrived to help out in the cleaning effort.

State officials said prison inmates shoveled snow from sidewalks, helped with maintenance on snow plows and assisted with other snow-removal efforts in Greene, Lee, McDowell and Montgomery counties.

Icy patches on the roads caused numerous accidents in the Triangle Friday.

Authorities now believe ice was responsible for

a five-car accident

on Interstate 40 near Jones Sausage Road.

Reports say three people were taken to WakeMed. One person is reportedly still in serious condition.

The highway patrol had 1,900 calls for help across the state between midnight Thursday and 3 p.m. Friday. More than 300 of the calls were from the Triangle.

Traffic was backed up for much of Friday morning along eastbound Interstate 40 in Johnston County by a jackknifed tractor trailer on the slick roadway.

Schools closed for a second straight day Friday as North Carolina's first winter storm of the year ended with a foot of snow or more on the ground.

Storm totals ranged mainly from 10 to 12 inches in the Raleigh-Durham area, with accumulations reaching 14 inches north and east of the Triangle, the National Weather Service reported.

The Greensboro and Winston-Salem areas received mostly 6 to 8 inches, with up to 7 inches in Charlotte. Fayetteville and the Sandhills reported 4 to 8 inches. Coastal areas also saw an inch or two of snow as freezing rain or rain melted away much of the snow that fell. Western counties avoiding the storm's brunt saw about the same amount.