Icy road conditions proved too much for many motorist

CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee(WDEF) – Everyone was expecting snow to sweep through Chattanooga but Mother Nature delivered freezing rain that caused havoc during the Wednesday morning commute.

There were a number of weather related wrecks and traffic jams caused by wrecks during Chattanooga’s first wintry mix of precipitation.

The morning commute was anything but a positive experience for motorist like Brittany Henegar. She was one of several motorist who either crashed or nearly crashed while sliding down the northbound Highway 27 exit ramp at Manufacturers Road.

"I was prepared to hit them but there was a small area where I could goff into the grass and that was what happened. I went down and ran into some rocks that stopped me," Henegar said.

The exit ramp was so icy that it had to be closed for a good part of the day until temperatures rose above the freezing mark.

In other areas, vehicles simply slid off side-roads and into ditches. News 12 spotted one man pacing beside his car that was stuck sideways in a ditch. He was waiting for a tow truck.

On I-75 near the Ooltewah exit, a weather related multi-vehicle crash halted traffic in both directions.The gridlock made it almost impossible for TDOT crews to do their jobs on that stretch of the interstate.

"Our salt trucks can’t get there or salt the road if there’s traffic on it so we’ve had our issues this morning," said TDOT spokeswoman Jennifer Flynn.

Flynn also said TDOT was hoping the wintry weather would only be snow, but Mother Nature had other plans.

"We would much rather have a snow event happen than an ice event because that’s more difficult to deal with. The road way temperatures were extremely cold so that made it even more difficult to get some of the icy spots off the roadway," Flynn said.

TDOT will continue to monitor weather conditions over the next couple of days because there a threat of heavy continuous rain on Thursday and snow Friday night.

Categories: Local News, Weather News

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