Shelby -Traffic is now moving on I-77 South in Surry
County after hazardous weather conditions this afternoon caused several tractor
trailers to lose traction and slide off the road, blocking traffic and
triggering heavy congestion. N.C. Department of Transportation crews are
currently plowing the interstate to remove any snow and ensure motorist safety.
The department urges drivers not to be on the roads tonight due to the
potential for icy road conditions.
A band of heavy snow blanketed the region this afternoon,
causing road conditions along I-74, I-77 and U.S. 52 to deteriorate quickly.
About 4 p.m., the treacherous driving conditions caused three tractor trailers
to become stuck, causing additional accidents and creating significant
congestion on I-77 from mile markers 85 to 100.
In an effort to find a way
around the queue, some motorists traveled to I-74 where similar weather
conditions caused two tractor trailers to slide and get stuck just east of the Park Drive overpass, rendering the interstate impassable and generating traffic
congestion. Towing operators are in the process of pulling the tractor trailers
out of the roadway, so traffic can flow once again.
NCDOT currently has multiple snow plows and salt
spreaders operating on I-74, I-77 and U.S. 52. These roads were initially
cleared early this morning before the latest band of snow moved in. The salt is
taking longer to be effective because of the lack of sun, which helps with the
chemical reaction to melt the snow and ice.
The department also sent two
Incident Management Assistance Patrol, or IMAP, trucks from Statesville, one
IMAP truck from Forsyth County and another from Davie County to I-77 earlier
this evening to check on drivers waiting in the congestion, providing fuel and
traffic control assistance.
For real-time travel information at any time, call 511,
visit www.ncdot.gov/travel or
follow NCDOT on Twitter. Another option is NCDOT Mobile, a phone-friendly
version of the NCDOT website.
You can also get emergency information from the N.C.
Department of Public Safety at http://readync.org,
and download the ReadyNC app to help you prepare for everything from road
conditions to severe storms on a daily basis.