NEW YORK – Flash freezing roads left a glaze of ice underneath thousands of tires in the northeast. From Pennsylvania to New York to New England, crashes were reported and drivers blamed ‘black ice’ for the accidents.
The Associated Press reports a deadly pile up on Interstate 76 outside Philadelphia wrecked 30 to 50 vehicles.
A rainy day coupled with a quick drop in temperatures created the dangerous conditions Sunday morning, which continued through the weekend and into Monday.
According to FDNY, New York firefighters responded to more than a dozen of accidents across the city Sunday morning alone including a 20-car pileup on the Bruckner Expressway.
The icy conditions forced several closures as well. A large section of the Long Island Expressway was cut off near the Queens-Midtown Tunnel and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey closed the Palisades Interstate Parkway to the George Washington Bridge.
Bus services were canceled or delayed in many areas of the northeast, clearing the roads for first responders, who recorded hundreds of calls for aid.
“How can we put this plainly? THERE ARE ICY CONDITIONS ON MOST ROADS. AVOID TRAVEL UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY. Sorry for yelling :)” Philadelphia police tweeted Sunday morning.
New Jersey State Police reported 428 car accidents and speed restrictions all before noon on Sunday.
A NJ Department of Transportation spokesman said conditions have improved since the weekend but flooding still remains a concern.
Further north, freezing roads continue to be a hazardous problem due to black ice and additional traffic after the holiday weekend.