The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

March 20, 2013

Accidents reported amid winter storm

By Richard Whitby
The Daily Star

---- — Heavy snow and slick driving conditions Tuesday morning kept police busy with scores of motor vehicle accidents, including a tractor-trailer rollover on Interstate 88 in Oneonta.

The westbound, tractor-trailer, which was carrying a load of frozen Italian food, skidded off the highway between exits 15 and 16 about 9:25 a.m., sliding down an embankment and overturning, said Sgt. Marc Barbera of the Oneonta station of the state police.

The driver, Roy Gurley, 51, of Texas, complained of back and elbow pain, Barbera said, and was transported to A.O. Fox Hospital in Oneonta.

The accident closed one westbound lane of the interstate.

Barbera said there were numerous other accidents — about normal for a snowy day — but only one other involving a injury, also minor.

Delaware County Sheriff Thomas E. Mills said there were numerous property-damage accidents but none that were serious.

“The back roads and the county roads, they just can’t plow them as well as the state does,” Mills said. “The state uses a lot of salt. So does the county, but it takes a while to get the stuff off.”

Otsego deputies responded to about 20 accidents after about 6:30 a.m., a dispatcher said. Only two involved injuries, and they were minor, she said. The rest of the crashes involved only property damage.

State police in Sidney said it was a fairly normal morning.

One fatality was reported Monday afternoon in Broome County where a 34-year-old woman died after she lost control of her car on a curve and it collided with a pickup truck. State police said the cause of the accident remained under investigation.

The snowfall was not unusual for late March, said Mitch Guilt of the National Weather Service in Binghamton, although he conceded that it might seem that way after a week of 70-degree weather at this time last year.

Guilt said that snowfall amounts from Monday afternoon into midday Tuesday ranged from about 5 inches to 6.5 inches. He added that most of the region has received normal or below normal snowfall amounts so far this season.

It could have been worse. Forecasts called for parts of New England to get a foot of wet, heavy snow.

The weather service predicts a chance of snow or at least flurries for the rest of the week, with high temperatures in the mid-30s and nighttime lows in the mid-teens.

Numerous school districts in the region were closed for the day or postponed their openings by one or two hours.