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Nice afternoon with a couple of small showers as weak front moved back north as a warm front. Some fog again tonight but should be more low clouds as enough wind should keep the fog from being to widespread. An upper level disturbance will pass north of the area late tomorrow with T-storms in northeast Texas. Big question is will the ...
Icy roads cause more accidents than usual
BEAUMONT - by Lauren Huet
More law enforcement officers than usual patrolled Jefferson County today, anticipating trouble on the icy roads. The Beaumont Police Department received more than 98 reported crashes since midnight Friday; none involved serious injuries. In the rural part of Jefferson County, the Sheriff's Office received 30 accident reports, 5 were major accidents. Deputies say there are usually only 3 accidents per day.
Deputy Joey Rodriguez with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office has been on duty since six Friday morning.
"Pretty much what we've done today is go from accident to accident," said Deputy Rodriguez. "A lot of them just sliding off the road, but some of them have been more serious."
Tire marks and a broken fence on the side of the road show the aftermath of one of those accidents.
"Guy lost control on a bridge, went through a fence, and hit a tree, and he was hurt pretty bad. He had to go to a hospital for that," said Rodriguez.
Bridges and overpasses are extremely dangerous during icy conditions. Chris Wade's SUV hit ice while he was driving over Taylor's Bayou Bridge on I-10.
"The car in front of me started sliding," said Wade, "and I was going over the top of an overpass, and I was trying to avoid them and I slid, and spun around and ended up in the middle of the interstate in a ditch."
Wade did what officers say you're supposed to do when the roads are slick: wait in the car.
"Fortunately, there was a highway patrolman that was coming up the other side," said Wade. "He saw me, he slowed down, he asked if I was hurt. I said no, I just need a wrecker, he said, there's some on the other side, I'll try and get you one."
Local law enforcement was called out to Taylor's Bayou Bridge many times Friday because of accidents or drivers losing control of their vehicles. If you're driving over an overpass or bridge during icy conditions, be sure to follow these tips.
"Don't slam on your brakes," said Rodriguez, "let off the gas, don't give it too much gas, and just let off the gas and coast across it. Slamming on the brakes is the worst thing."
Wade is grateful his slide on the ice wasn't more serious.
"God is always watching out over us and that's good. So, very fortunate," said Wade.
He's getting back on the road, and says he's taking it slow and safe.
The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office will have one and a half times its normal amount of officers until 10 p.m. Friday. The city of Beaumont's Emergency Operation Center will continue operating through Friday night.