At least 12 people have died on snow- and ice-covered roads across Iowa and Missouri on February 4 and 5, 2018 and more than 80 were injured, at least 7 critically. A major pileup involving as many as 70 vehicles took place on I-35 near Ames, Iowa, while officials in Missouri reported more than 650 road crashes in two days and a massive 100-vehicle pileup on I-44 near Springfield. Another winter storm is brewing over the lower Mississippi Valley today.
Multiple collisions took place in Iowa on Monday, February 5, 2018 after a dangerous winter storm covered roads in snow and ice. Reports received early February 6 mention at least 7 deaths and 5 critically injured.
A major pileup involving as many as 70 vehicles took place on Interstate 35 near Ames Monday afternoon, temporarily closing the roadway. The pileup left at least one person dead and 5 critically injured. Officials said it was one of the worst pileups they've seen in the area.
According to Local5, a man who was involved in the pileup said he was driving along I-35 north near exit 113 when he was smashed into by another car. "It was a chain reaction after that... As soon as I saw there weren't any more cars, I watched about 20 to 30 cars start piling up."
Iowa State Patrol Sgt. Nathan Ludwig told KCCI that seven people died on Iowa roads Monday. "Altogether," he said, "troopers responded to 185 accidents across the state."
Southbound Interstate 35 is now blocked between Exit 113: 13th Street and Exit 111: US 30 (Ames). The road is blocked due to numerous crashes. Check https://t.co/eIAyugfTOP for updates/ pic.twitter.com/CaXoP9J2hP— Statewide Iowa 511 (@statewideia511) February 5, 2018
This is what it is like on I35 Northbound just north of Ankeny. pic.twitter.com/ioa1IucyzK— Marcus McIntosh KCCI (@MarcusKCCI) February 5, 2018
U.S. Highway 30 near Grand Junction and I-80 in Clive was also temporarily closed Monday morning after a vehicle crossed the center line and hit a van head-on. One person was killed and 2 injured.
Two men were killed and one was seriously injured after a crash on Highway 380 in Cedar Rapids. Another person was killed in Poweshiek County on I-80.
Numerous flights at Des Moines International Airport were canceled or delayed.
In neighboring Missouri, at least 5 people died and more than 70 were injured in more than 650 vehicle accidents across the state.
A massive 100-vehicle pileup happened on snow- and ice-covered Interstate 44 near Springfield in which at least one person dead and 11 were injured.
The seriousness of the event became painfully apparent after Conway Volunteer Fire Department posted the following drone video:
"Cold and dry air has settled over the Ohio Valley, Mid-Atlantic and Northeast and there will be another cold front crossing this region today which will help to reinforce the cold air through the middle of the week," the National Weather Service said early Tuesday, February 6, 2018.
"This will be important in setting the stage for the next winter storm to impact this region as a storm system develops over the lower Mississippi Valley by later today and then lifts northeast up across the Tennessee Valley, central Mid-Atlantic and southern New England through Wednesday," it said.
Heavy snowfall can be expected north and west of the low track and areas of the northern Mid-Atlantic region and interior Northeast will see the heaviest snowfall with some areas seeing as much as 15 - 30 cm (6 to 12 inches). Just south of this axis of heavy snow will be a stripe of freezing rain which will extend from the Ohio Valley northeast up across southern New England.
Some locally significant icing is expected.
Featured image: 70-vehicle pileup on I-35 near Ames, Iowa on February 5, 2018. Credit: Iowa DOT