From today’s Charleston Daily Mail:
Dozens of wrecks, including fatality, result from rush hour snow
by Kelly L. Holleran
Daily Mail staff
There were more than 40 vehicle accidents in the Charleston area in the span of about 90 minutes this morning, including one fatal wreck, said Dale Petry, Kanawha County emergency services director.
BREAKING NEWS: Dozens of wrecks result from rush hour snow
Officers investigate a fender bender on Court Street in Charleston this morning. Many accidents were reported during rush hour. ..
The accidents began about 7:30 a.m. after it began to snow, a Metro 911 dispatcher said.
In one of the accidents, one person died in Hernshaw this morning, Petry said.
The multiple-car pile-up happened between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. on state Route 94, Petry said.
The accident probably happened because the road was already cold when it started to mist, Petry said.
The mist on the road caused black ice to form, he said.
There were no other injuries in the accident, Petry said.
Officials are not releasing the identity of the person until family members are notified, he said.
The road will be shut down for an unspecified amount of time, he said.
In another accident, a bus transporting children sideswiped a guardrail. That happened about 8:34 a.m., the dispatcher said.
The accident happened at the intersection of South Park Road and Chesterfield Avenue, the dispatcher said.
There were no injuries, she said.
Less than one inch of rain fell in the Charleston area this morning, said Fred McMullen, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
Most of the precipitation in the valleys was rain, but some snow fell near Yeager Airport and the higher elevations, he said.
The rain is expected to taper off to drizzle this afternoon, he said.
Note: with the onset of winter and snowy and icy conditions, drivers have a greater responsibility for the safety of their passengers and other drivers. All-to-often, West Virginia drivers, especially tractor trailers, tend to speed up in icy conditions, as if they have a suicide wish. Well, who cares about them if they want to commit suicide; the problem is, that most other drivers on the road are completely innocent, and their lives can be taken away in an instant by some reckless and selfish jerk. The law requires that drivers adjust their driving according to the weather conditions. So, if the roads are icy and there is low visibility, the law may require you to drive far below the speed limit and maintain greater care in changing lanes. The measuring point is reasonableness. What would a “reasonable person” do in the exact same weather conditions…. – John H. Bryan, West Virginia car accident attorney.