U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Michigan
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 01-10-2015, 07:16 AM
 
Location: Scott County, Tennessee/by way of Detroit
3,321 posts, read 1,561,999 times
Reputation: 10161

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynarie View Post
There is a video up of the one on I-94. It has solidified my driving slow stance. Thursday night I was going around 50, and people were flying past me at 70/80.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9fI5M6_XVk&app=desktop
You were smart...that is very scary...
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-10-2015, 07:40 AM
mcq
 
Location: SE Michigan
317 posts, read 409,431 times
Reputation: 256
I remember the big I-75 one in Detroit a couple of years ago. That one was also was mentioned on national news. Sudden whiteout conditions caused by a snow squall. I sometimes take that stretch home from work, but not usually. That may have been a case where the weather situation was just very extreme. However, most of the time, it only takes driver (out of thousands) mistake to cause a huge mess.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Lansing, MI
2,955 posts, read 5,418,747 times
Reputation: 3214
Coming from the perspective of moving out of MI in 2007 then coming back.

When MI hit a budget crisis in 2006-2007 time, most counties stopped significantly salting the roads. They only salted bridges and intersections. They have continued this practice.

Yesterday, we had several issues.
1. lack of salt on the roads
2. blowing
3. white out conditions


On Thur night, I personally knew the highways would be TERRIBLE on Friday because my county (suburb of Lansing) was sending out plows 3 strong, staggered, per direction on the secondary highways. On Friday morning, I left my home for work an hour earlier than normal just to account for the bad roads, and I arrived right on time, not early. I'm one of the slow drivers that will take it steady and slow, and I usually make the idiots mad when they are behind me.

Yesterday afternoon, I also had a trip to Toledo that I could not postpone. US23 closed at 1:15pm, I left Lansing at 3pm. The next alternative route was 275 south, and that was ALSO closed by the time I rolled through due to an accident. I had to hit 75 from Detroit to get to Toledo. Going south, the wind created white out conditions several times. The accident on US23 was a result of white out conditions.

Suddenly you see everyone, suddenly you don't!

I passed the wreckage on US23 coming home last night, about 7:30pm, and it was still a massive pileup. They had several semi trucks there were digging out of the ditch still at that hour. I made it back home after 10pm. I had numerous 4x4 trucks pulling trailers speed past me - anyone that knows anything about hauling a trailer also knows how easily it can go out of control in bad conditions.

Sure enough, 7am Saturday morning, the highway I take into work was black ice and cars were sliding. I passed a rollover on my way in.

People too much in a hurry without realizing they are not the only ones on the road. No one thinks about how much stopping distance they will need until it is too late.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Michigan
4,534 posts, read 5,903,727 times
Reputation: 3514
Quote:
Originally Posted by westernwilly View Post
The 193 car crash in Kalamazoo was not in a rural area. It is an area with heavy traffic that gets plowed constantly. The area has also been named one of the worst stretches of interstate for accidents in the country.

Too much traffic and no money to widen the road. They got some federal funding 7 years ago and they widened several miles, but then those funds stopped coming and the construction stopped.

Looks like the Tea Party got it's way. People lose life, limb and property,but they get to save a few dollars.
http://goo.gl/maps/NRveJ

Looks pretty rural to me. There's still a lot of wide open space that allows snow to drift onto the road no matter how much it's plowed. Widening it wouldn't make a difference in winter weather nor do you really need a whole lot of traffic for a pile up to occur.

The bottom line is people were driving too fast to be able to stop in time once an accident occurred.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Pure Michigan!
3,618 posts, read 6,036,244 times
Reputation: 4719
I drove home from work yesterday morning (I work nights) on the stretch of US-23 between Ottawa Lake and Dundee. Conditions were awful, with patches of snow and black ice everywhere. There was also blowing snow, since this is a north/south highway that is surrounded by open farm fields. I lost count of how many cars blew past me in the left lane doing the posted speed limit or close to it. That speed limit is designed for when the roads are dry and non-hazardous, NOT when they are covered with wintry precipitation! I was just driving in the right lane, praying that I would make it home before some idiot spun out and hit me and knocked me into the ditch or worse, like into the path of a semi.

I don't get why people feel the need to put others at risk just because they don't want to be hindered. It's like it's their world, and we are just allowed to share it with them. Then, if they have an accident, it's never their fault, it's always because the road crews were somehow not doing their jobs, even though I see them out there 24/7 doing their best to make the roads safe for us.

I have to say too, that if they aren't using salt on the roads anymore, then my car sure looks like a giant salt block this morning. It got salt all over it somehow, and I have only driven in Michigan since this weather began a few days ago.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 09:37 AM
 
576 posts, read 801,830 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by westernwilly View Post
The 193 car crash in Kalamazoo was not in a rural area. It is an area with heavy traffic that gets plowed constantly. The area has also been named one of the worst stretches of interstate for accidents in the country.

Too much traffic and no money to widen the road. They got some federal funding 7 years ago and they widened several miles, but then those funds stopped coming and the construction stopped.

Looks like the Tea Party got it's way. People lose life, limb and property,but they get to save a few dollars.

Between Climax and Galesburg, it is pretty rural. Let's not pretend otherwise. I grew up in this area, so I know what I'm talking about. Just because a highway (or road) gets "heavy traffic" doesn't mean that it gets plowed (you see this a lot in Metro Detroit). That's just a fantasy because there are only so many snowplows to go around in Kalamazoo County and they can't be everywhere at once. And just because there's no snow on the road doesn't mean it's just wet on the road. Ice is a real hazard. Also, plowing doesn't mean that people are inherently safe from harm either. The weather conditions were just awful yesterday - regardless of how you look at it.

In the end, you really can't be 100% prepared for black ice or snow squalls.

Also, there's plenty of blame to go around for road funding problems. Beginning with Jen Granholm and all those stupid budget crises (that closed down the government) that diverted money from roads to balance the budget. That was a few years before the Tea Party really got started. Both Republicans and Dems have played these games with road funding, so let's not act like this magically started in 2009 with the Tea Party okay? It was going on way before then.

Hope that everyone is staying safe and warm.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Here.
10,990 posts, read 9,660,376 times
Reputation: 13088
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynarie View Post
There is a video up of the one on I-94. It has solidified my driving slow stance. Thursday night I was going around 50, and people were flying past me at 70/80.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9fI5M6_XVk&app=desktop
Damn, that sent chills up my spine!

I'm wondering for these extreme cases if an emergency stopping device couldn't be built for cars, for example, a series of metal "hooks" that would drop down from below the car and dig into the ice? Maybe like a metal rake? I know it seems ridiculous considering how rare these conditions are, but damn, anyone watching those helpless people slam into those semis would be easily convinced to pay for such an option on their new car.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Lansing, MI
2,955 posts, read 5,418,747 times
Reputation: 3214
The amount of salt being used on the roads is significantly less than what other states use and what Michigan used in the past. Look at the difference between Ohio and Michigan (I was on both yesterday). Ohio's highways were treated and in great shape, Michigan were blowing over, black ice and had build up forming. Also look at the secondary roads compared to highways. Heck, even the ramps are getting neglected.

Counties and MDOT crews are using less to treat the roads and only spreading on major intersections and bridges on the secondary roads. My Nixle alerts tell me that "Lansing is salting intersections and bridges" when I get maintenance alerts. It is not just my imagination that MI roads are going untreated or significantly less treated, and that is resulting in higher accident rates (and higher insurance rates).
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Here.
10,990 posts, read 9,660,376 times
Reputation: 13088
Another question to ponder: should semis, or at least semis carrying hazardous materials, be prohibited from driving when icing conditions are occurring or forecast?
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-10-2015, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Michigan
4,534 posts, read 5,903,727 times
Reputation: 3514
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragon_fly_12 View Post
The amount of salt being used on the roads is significantly less than what other states use and what Michigan used in the past. Look at the difference between Ohio and Michigan (I was on both yesterday). Ohio's highways were treated and in great shape, Michigan were blowing over, black ice and had build up forming. Also look at the secondary roads compared to highways. Heck, even the ramps are getting neglected.

Counties and MDOT crews are using less to treat the roads and only spreading on major intersections and bridges on the secondary roads. My Nixle alerts tell me that "Lansing is salting intersections and bridges" when I get maintenance alerts. It is not just my imagination that MI roads are going untreated or significantly less treated, and that is resulting in higher accident rates (and higher insurance rates).
Salt becomes less effective the colder the temperature gets. After a certain point, de-icer chemicals or sand have to be used, either of which is more expensive than salt. They also don't melt ice as quickly (the 2nd graph) but do last longer. However, that's negated if the surface they're used on is plowed often. There's simply no way to completely combat the laws of physics.


Using Salt and Sand for Winter Road Maintenance
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2013 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $99,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Michigan

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2017, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32 - Top