Slick Roads Cause Pileup Involving Dozens of Vehicles in West Michigan
Winter has not yet loosened its grip on Michigan and on Saturday (3/12) dozens of drivers were reminded just how much of an impact snow and colder-than-usual temps can have on road conditions in our state.
US-131 Closes for Hours
Officials in West Michigan had to close down roughly a five-mile stretch of northbound and southbound US-131 in Allegan County after slick roads and treacherous whiteout conditions caused dozens of vehicles to slide off the road or crash. Although most of the action was in Martin Township, located roughly 25 miles north of Kalamazoo, dispatchers in Kalamazoo County reported to Mlive that traffic was backing up into that county as well.
Drivers encountered glazed roads and whiteout conditions Saturday morning causing many chain-reaction collisions. Officials had to close down northbound US-131 at roughly 11:30 am. The video below - provided to Mlive by Chris Hickmott and posted on YouTube - shows the aftermath of the situation with dozens of vehicles off the shoulders of the expressway. Some had slid into the ditch, others had been involved in collisions, and some were simply stopped waiting for accidents to clear and for officials to reopen the interstate.
US-131 Reopened Saturday Afternoon
Dozens of officials worked to clear accidents and finally around 2 pm Saturday, Michigan State Police officers were able to reopen US 131 to northbound traffic.
Snow squalls and whiteout conditions can sometimes take even experienced Michigan drivers by surprise. As many as 160 motorists in Metro Detroit were greeted with glazed roads when unexpected snow showers caused multiple accidents along I-696 just a few weeks ago.