Crews respond to nearly 150 crashes as winter weather hits northern Utah Friday

Posted at 9:26 PM, Nov 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-17 23:26:31-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- The mix of rain and snow made for a messy commute for drivers Friday. There were around 150 crashes, which is around triple the amount the state usually sees.

Friday kept members of the state’s incident management team very busy.

“I've been doing this for 21 years now,” said Billy Frashure, an Incident Management specialist.

Frashure knows Utah’s roads like the back of his hand, and he knows the drivers and how they react when the snowy season starts.

“It's the same thing every year: the first storm always surprises people,” Frashure said.

This year is no different. The first significant storm that hit Friday created slick conditions, resulting in more than 100 crashes.

“Today was sort of hectic,” Frashure said. “It's just been crash, one right after another after another.”

As the storms roll in, Frashure has some simple advice for drivers if the roads are wet - slow down.

“The speeds are just a little bit too fast for the conditions and that's what creates a lot of it,” Frashure said.

If you do get in a weather related crash, like many drivers did Friday: “You never want to get out of your car, you always want to stay in your car, seat belt closed, so if another car spins out of slides out or whatever,” Frashure said.

And if you can, drive your car off the freeway to get it out of traffic. If you're on the road and see Frashure or his colleagues, he has a favor to ask of you.

“They really need to slow down, move over. If you can't move over at least slow down,” he said.

While Friday's storm warmed us up to winter driving conditions, Frashure wants you to be ready for the heavy snow that's sure to come.

“The main thing is slow down a little bit, be patient, you'll still get there,” he said.

Frashure says they're ramping up for next week when another storm could hit. As for Friday night and Saturday, there is a concern for black ice so be extra cautious on freeway ramps and bridges.