Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

Local News

December 17, 2008

Glaze of ice keeps emergency crews hustling; more ice expected

When freezing rain started spitting on Tuesday’s early afternoon, all eyes and ice settled on the ground. The situation put area schools and after-school activities on ice Tuesday afternoon and evening.

This morning, the situation was just as treacherous as a glaze of ice covered roadways and sidewalks. Area schools are closed and emergency crews were out again this morning responding to accidents caused by the slippery conditions.

Emergency crews have been busy since Tuesday afternoon, as have road crews. At 1:13 p.m. a rollover near Ste. Marie in Jasper County was the first of a rash of accidents that created havoc along several roads and closed Interstate 57 for a period of time.

Traveling north on Ste. Marie Road at 1:13 p.m. Tuesday about three and a half miles north of the Richland County line, Danielle M. Dimarzio, 21, of Robinson lost control of the Olds Cutlass Supreme she was driving, causing it to roll into the east ditch. She was taken to Richland Memorial hospital in Olney. Her condition is unknown.

At 1:43 p.m., a southbound vehicle driven by Alana Ross,19, of Carbondale went out of control and into the median of Interstate 57 and rolled, five miles south of Effingham. Ross, along with passenger Jeremy Baker of Calumet City, were ejected from the vehicle into the median of the interstate. Ross’s vehicle came to rest in oncoming traffic of the northbound lane of I-57. Ross was taken to St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital in Effingham with incapacitating injuries and Baker was taken to Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana. Baker is listed in critical condition. Ross’ condition is unknown.

The accident shut the interstate down for approximately an hour and a half. Neither Ross nor Baker were wearing seat belts.

With the precipitation described as a “freezing drizzle” leaving “a light glaze” by Fred Glass, meteorologist for the National Weather Service, the weather proved to be enough to send transportation into a tail spin.

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