In response to: Drivers In South Stranded For 24 Hours On Icy Roads
I live about 3-1/2 hours north of Atlanta. All I have to say is this: we had well over 8 hours advanced notice of this storm. People had the time to get off work (or make the decision to stay home), I had the chance to coach my employees (having lived for several years in upstate NY), and went so far as to give my people some control over their schedules so as to help with family and to allow some leeway if the storm was bad.
Now, if these people were so idiotic as to NOT listen what makes anyone think that they have the common sense to actually get these materials together to create a survival kit for a storm that happens once a generation?
They’re simply idiots.
Remember that this started with freezing rain and then the 2-inches of snow. That is by far the most dangerous combination of conditions – the perfect storm. Especially in a place like Atlanta, which never has snow.
Roads naturally have mostly-dry oil them, from tires and exhaust, but rain wettens the oil and makes it slick, which is why the beginning of a rain, when it just gets wet a little, creates a slick, oily film that is the most dangerous. If it keeps raining, though, it washes that film away.
However, in the case of freezing rain, it can capture that oil on top of the ice, making a near-frictionless surface. When you add a little snow on top of that, you can’t tell where the black ice patches are. Your tires may catch on the snow on top, but that snow glides on the oil which is gliding on the ice underneath. It doesn’t matter how good your tires are, because you are on top of two sliding layers.
That’s why there are so many accidents.