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Icy weather continues to wreak havoc on highways

SoVaNow.com / March 26, 2014
With the forecast calling for a late blast of winter on Tuesday, crews with the Virginia Department of Transportation were still working to clean up damage wrought the week before by icy roads.

On Monday, March 17, around 10 p.m., Virginia State Trooper R.C. Duffer was investigating a single-car accident on U.S. 58, just east of Highway 15 North near Clarksville, where a 2003 Ford Excursion crashed into the Highway 58/Highway 49 green road sign. That was followed by a second car crashing into the same sign, knocking it to the ground.

Both drivers, according to Duffer, were moving too fast for the icy road conditions.

The double calamity began around 9:56 p.m. when 44-year-old Michael Simon of West Orange, N.J. slid off the left side of Route 58 east, after crossing over Route 15. When his 2003 Ford Excursion left the road, it collided with a green metal VDOT informational sign in the median strip.

Simon was not injured, but his vehicle sustained an estimated $6,000 in damages.

Less than five minutes later, 34-year-old Corey Barley of Java, while travelling the same route as Simon, also slid off the road to the left and struck the same sign. This second collision finished off the road sign, bringing it to the ground.

Barley suffered minor injuries but refused transport to the hospital, said Trooper Duffer. His 2005 Chevrolet Avalanche sustained an estimated $10,000 in damages.

Duffer cited both drivers with “driving too fast for road conditions.”

On Friday, a FedEx delivery truck heading west on U.S. 58 near the intersection of Highways 58 and 92 collided with a second vehicle heading the same direction. Weather was not a factor in this accident.

According to a report filed by Trooper C.B. Sizemore, 54-year-old John Longo of Chesterfield was heading west on U.S. 58 near the intersection of Highway 92 in a FedEx truck when he pulled into the lane in which 86-year-old Rudolph Lohmeyer, Jr. of Clarksville was travelling in his 2003 Buick LeSabre. The FedEx truck forced Lohmeyer’s LeSabre off the road to the left and into a ditch.

Neither party was injured, but both vehicles suffered damage. The FedEx van had an estimated $900 in damages and Lohmeyer’s LeSabre suffered an estimated $1,200 in damages.

Sizemore cited Longo for failing to yield to a vehicle with the right of way.

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