Icy Road Safety.com - Prepare for Weather's Most Underrated Hazard

                Monday, January 2, 2012 - 11:40PM

Significant road icing outbreak: Monday, January 2, 2012

Storm Chaser/Photographer
RSS/XML feed
Twitter feed
Dan's YouTube Video Channel

Monday, January 2 saw an exceptionally widespread, damaging and tragic road icing event/accident outbreak across multiple states, caused by a minor snowfall event. Numerous major pileups occured on interstates and highways with several fatalities and countless injuries in Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, New York, Indiana, Illinois, Virginia and Michigan. This event is one of the largest/worst in the US that I have come across during the past three years, and will warrant some data collection and a in-depth write-up after the full impact can be assessed. I will begin work tomorrow collecting information and data on this event, followed by an eventual case study to be posted here at a later date.

Preliminary notes: It appears at this time that the snowfall amounts associated with the worst accident numbers were very low, many cases an inch or less. Areas that saw higher accumulations generally experienced fewer accidents. This is consistent with previous data which shows that lighter snow events cause more severe accident outbreaks than bigger snowstorms. An intermittent 'squall' pattern of the precipitation also appears to be a major factor in the severity of this event. Much of the snow fell in intense, narrow bands, resulting in patchy, treacherous icing that drivers encountered suddenly.

Here are just a few of the news reports that have come in so far today:

As of 11:55PM Monday night, the reported death toll for this outbreak is at 4. That number will likely rise as more reports come in in the next 2 to 3 days. Stay tuned for updates on this event as more information is collected.

The following comments were posted before this site switched to a new comment system on August 27, 2016:

Recent Blog Posts
- Major road icing event affects 41 states - January 14-18, 2018 - January 20, 2018
- Trip to Mississippi and Alabama for Southern US winter storm - January 5-7, 2017 - January 22, 2017
- High-impact freezing rain/drizzle road icing event from Oklahoma to the East Coast - December 20, 2016
- New educational winter driving videos released, more planned - November 21, 2016
- "Icezilla" freezing rain disaster in the northeast US - January 19, 2015
- December 30-January 2 Oklahoma/Texas icing event sequence - January 2, 2015
- Freezing rain disaster - November 22, 2014 - November 23, 2014
- Report: Major winter storm in the Deep South, 1/28 - January 30, 2014
- Report: High Risk road icing event in south Texas/Louisiana - January 26, 2014
- Winter tires: not the solution for preventing icy crashes - December 13, 2013
- Preliminary low estimate of December 3-8 toll - December 9, 2013
- The Top 7 Icy Road Myths - December 6, 2013
- Aren't icy road crashes caused by driving too fast for conditions, not ice and snow? - November 14, 2012
- Road icing news for January-February 2012 - February 25, 2012
- Commentary on the recent viral WV pileup video - January 8, 2012
- Significant road icing outbreak: Monday, January 2, 2012 - January 2, 2012
- No vehicle can safely go highway speeds on icy roads - December 23, 2011
- Another case for "Road Ice Warnings": December 8-9, 2011 light snow event - December 10, 2011
- A big thanks to those helping raise road icing awareness - November 18, 2011
- 15 road icing deaths in the past week: estimating the full impact - November 4, 2011
- 2011-2012 road ice season in the US already in full swing - October 22, 2011
- Coming this winter: another 2011 tornado season toll - July 21, 2011

Past Blog Archives
- April 2010 - January 2011 posts
- December 2009 - March 2010 posts
- November 2009 posts
- October 2009 posts
- March-April 2009 posts
- February 2009 posts
- January 2009 posts
- December 2008 posts

Educational Winter Driving Videos - Watch for Free:

Video: How to correct a slide on an icy road (and how to prevent them)Video: Icy Bridges: Weather's underrated killerVideo: Deadliest Weather: Freezing Rain

Home | Risk | Stats | Accident Video | Icy Bridges | Tips | Warning Signs | If You Slide | If You Wreck

Average annual
deaths in the US
from icy roads

Average annual
injuries in the US
from icy roads

[ More Statistics ]

All content © Dan Robinson. All usage requires a paid license - please contact Dan for inquiries.

Web Site Design and Internet Marketing by CIS Internet