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Icy surprise brings activity to a crawl

South Boston News
Friday’s snow turned to a slushy mess as temperatures warmed.
SoVaNow.com / March 10, 2014
Halifax County residents can look forward to moderate temperatures this week, say weather forecasters, after Friday’s storm delivered a surprise burst of ice and snow to cap off a brutal stretch of winter weather.

The forecast for Friday morning had warned of light snow mixed with freezing rain, one day after temperatures climbed into the 60s and 70s during the afternoon hours Thursday. But after that taste of spring, the intensity of Friday’s storm caught many residents by surprise.

Schools were closed for the day after students had already missed class on Monday and Tuesday due to inclement weather. The opening of school was delayed Wednesday, leaving Thursday as the only full day of the week.

County road crews and employees of South Boston’s Public Works Department were called out by 7 p.m. Thursday to begin the arduous task of preparing roads and streets for the incoming system. But the intensity of the snow and ice Friday overwhelmed advance preparations, and roads were slick and treacherous for most of the day.

In the Chase City area, one person died Friday in a weather related crash. The victim was Deloris Wright, 76, who was riding as a passenger in a vehicle traveling on Highway 47 east of Chase City, near Draper Road (Route 600).

According to Virginia State Trooper B. M. DeLoach, who investigated, Peggy Hayes, 57 of Chase City was driving when she lost control of her 2010 Chevy Cobalt on an icy patch.

According to the trooper, Hayes’ vehicle spun into the opposite lane and was struck by a 1998 Cadillac DeVille driven by 44-year-old Derrick Smith of Brodnax.

Hayes was transported to the local hospital for treatment. Her passenger, Wright, died at the scene. Smith suffered minor injuries, but was not transported for treatment.

Each car incurred about $5,000 in damages, according to State Police estimates. Charges are pending.

By Saturday, sunshine and warmer temperatures melted away most of the snow, leaving the ground soggy but the roads clear. The weather for the next several days is expected to be in the low 70s.

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