Icy roads led to accidents, slide-offs during morning commute

Dispatch centers in Elkhart County reported 25 crashes happened during the morning commute hours Wednesday.
Posted on Jan. 8, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. | Updated on Jan. 9, 2014 at 12:35 p.m.

ELKHART — Roads were mostly clear, but they remained icy Wednesday morning, Jan. 8, making the commute difficult for many throughout the county.

Elkhart County 911 Center Director Egbert Dijkstra said 21 accidents were reported throughout the county between 4 and 10:30 a.m., with only one accident resulting in an injury. Additionally, Dijkstra said 12 slide-offs were reported.

In Elkhart, four accidents and two disabled vehicles were reported, according to Desiree Detwiler, Elkhart City Communications Center assistant director.

Despite street departments’ efforts to clear the snow, roads remain slick because of ice and packed snow that was difficult to dissolve with chemically treated salt.

A snowstorm that left parts of Elkhart County covered in more than 12 inches of snow kept road crews busy clearing the streets through Tuesday.

Elkhart County issued a snow emergency order Sunday, prohibiting anyone from driving unless under an emergency. The ban was lifted Tuesday.

Elkhart County Sheriff Brad Rogers said in a statement that the sheriff’s department issued seven warnings and two citations during the snow emergency. The citations were issued as a result of crashes.

The temperature is expected to rise Wednesday afternoon, reaching a high of 15 degrees, and will continue to rise, reaching a high of 40 degrees on Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.

The higher temperature will allow the salt to work on the roads, improving road conditions sometime between Wednesday night and Thursday.

There will be a chance of snow and rain in the coming days, with a 50 percent chance of snow Thursday afternoon and an 80 percent chance of rain Friday night into Saturday, according to the weather service.

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