News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

January 20, 2012

Vigo County declares Level 1 emergency due to icing conditions

TERRE HAUTE — Freezing rain quickly slickened the roads Friday evening, sending Vigo County into a “Level 1” travel advisory.

Dr. Dorene Hojnicki, director of the Vigo County Emergency Management Agency, confirmed the advisory after 10 p.m. during an evening full of traffic accidents.

Per order of the Vigo County Commissioners, the advisory means all vehicles should leave the road immediately, she said. Emergency vehicles were having a difficult time responding to the numerous accidents occurring on the icy roadways in all parts of the county, and the advisory was to remain in effect until this morning.

The icy precipitation, which was expected in the late afternoon, started misting through the Wabash Valley shortly after 8 p.m. and had roads slick within minutes.

Parked in the driveway of the former 84 Lumber store on U.S. 40 near Seelyville, Jordan Kesner, Terre Haute, waited for emergency responders to clear the wreckage of a single-vehicle accident that occurred about 8:30 p.m.

Kesner said he was driving and saw the other vehicle spin on the ice before sliding into a guardrail. After helping the driver out of his car, Kesner pulled off to wait until the traffic, which was backing up, had cleared.

Parking lots and sidewalks were frozen over and people stepped gingerly to their vehicles. Meanwhile, Wabash Avenue was lined with police vehicles, tow trucks and ambulances.

Dispatchers at the Indiana State Police post in Putnamville reported that roads were extremely slick and drivers should take care. Multiple accidents were reported on roads throughout the Wabash Valley, but actual road closures had not occurred by 10 p.m., dispatchers said.

Boys basketball was stopped at Northview High School as its team hosted South Vermillion. Northview principal Lynn Romas reportedly stopped the game and sent fans home because of concerns about road conditions.

As of 10 p.m., officials were reporting that today’s South Vermillion High School’s wrestling meet would be delayed by two hours, and the North Central High School Thunderette Dance Camp is to be postponed until Feb. 4.

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    March 12, 2010