Roads ice over as temperatures drop below freezing

Authorities and Texas Department of Transportation officials reported ice on several roadways in and around the Austin metro area Tuesday evening as temperatures dropped below freezing.

Round Rock police reopened ramps to SH 45 shortly after 8 p.m. after they were able to clear 20 wrecked cars from an overpass after ice formed along the roadway.

The vehicles appeared to be stuck on flyover from Interstate 35 southbound to SH 45 westbound.

TxDOT said crews were also treating other roadways in Williamson County and crews in the surrounding 11 counties were either on-call or actively treating roadways Tuesday night.

Austin police also said some ice was reported on flyovers at U.S. Highway 183 and the SH 45 toll road.

The City of Pflugerville reported shortly after 7 p.m. ice was developing on bridges and overpasses and parts of SH 45 and SH 130 were being closed.

As the icy issues quickly piled up, a Winter Weather Advisory was re-issued for Travis, Williamson, Burnet, Llano, Bastrop, Lee and Fayette counties.

TxDOT and police advised drivers to lower their speeds and use caution on the roads by following these tips:

  • Reduce speed. Speed limits are based on normal road and weather conditions, not winter road conditions, so a significant reduction in speed is recommended to stay safe.
  • Maintain at least three times the normal following distance on snow or ice.
  • Stay back at least 200 feet from trucks and equipment treating roadways.
  • Use extra caution on bridges, ramps and overpasses as they tend to freeze first.
  • If you start to slide, ease off the gas pedal or brakes. Steer into the direction of the skid until you feel you have regained traction then straighten your vehicle.

TxDOT also says drivers should stay in their vehicle at all times, even if you become involved in a crash. If one vehicle slid off the road, there’s a potential that others will follow. Staying in your vehicle could help save your life.

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