Police stayed busy Sunday responding to dozens of slide-offs and crashes after snowy conditions and freezing rain left area roadways slick and treacherous for drivers.
More than 35 weather-related crashes were reported in Howard, Miami and Tipton counties Sunday, leading to more than $100,000 in total estimated damages to vehicles, guardrails, signs and other property damage.
The majority of the accidents in the three counties happened on U.S. 31.
In Howard County, police officers responded within three hours to two crashes at mile-marker 164 on U.S. 31, in which a vehicle lost control on an ice-covered bridge and careened into another vehicle.
On Ind. 22 near Goyer Road, a driver lost a control and slammed into a fire hydrant. Other slide-offs caused drivers to careen into traffic barrels near Touby Pike, and a Northwestern School Corp. sign on 300 North.
In Miami County, the first slide-off was reported at around 12:40 p.m. on U.S. 31. Deputies spent the rest of the afternoon responding to more than 12 accidents on the highway, including drivers barreling down embankments and hitting guardrails, fences, signs and other vehicles.
The Tipton County Sheriff’s Department responded to a dozen weather-related crashes, including a vehicle sliding into a county highway truck and another driver sliding into a parked car in Kempton.
Only a handful of minor injuries were reported out of all the crashes.
Indiana State Police Sgt. Tony Slocum said troopers saw consistent slide-offs throughout the day as well. He said the worst areas were U.S. 31 and U.S. 24.
“You’d like to think we’d get a little better at this after weeks of bad weather, but people are still driving too fast for the conditions,” Slocum said. “Sunday was a tough mixture of freezing rain combined with snow, and it probably caught some people off guard, but it shouldn’t have.”
He reminded drivers to slow down and keep plenty of distance between other vehicles when roadways are snow-covered and slick.