Freezing fog causes problems at Lilac

Posted: 2015/12/04 in accident, Weather
Tags: , , , , ,

Although the NWS posted dense fog advisories to the counties just to the east for this morning (but not for this section of 270), the admins spent most of the night checking the live feed cameras but could not tell if it was present.  Dense fog is common this time of the year but the low temperatures were in the 20s, which was a major concern – especially when both this section of 270 and the Clark Bridge corridors are prone to river fog when conditions are just right.

Around 04:00 the decision was made not to issue a travel advisory for the morning peak, which was reversed once sunrise had revealed that patchy fog was present at Lilac and was horrible on that section of 67 south of the Clark Bridge.

In fact, just before 06:00, this went out in the Twitter feed and immediately we knew that this morning peak was going to be nasty.  Although the incident was northbound, it was likely southbound (the peak direction) was going to be severely affected.

 

With that incident, the decision made at 04:00 was reversed and a CodeYellow travel advisory went in effect.

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As the first daylight images came in, a strip of dense freezing fog had settled along the hill just west of the Lilac exit, and by the 07:00 hour had begun, the combination of the heavier than normal traffic and the freezing fog had taken its toll:

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One lane would be blocked – sending delays that went back towards 255 and the crews would remain in the area until 09:00.  The delays went on well into the 08:00 hour before improving towards the end of the morning peak.  At least two incidents would be reported near the Lilac exit, and it was possible there was more.  With the woes on the Clark Bridge drive this morning (thankfully the incident was northbound), and the issues on WB 40 west of the Poplar Street Bridge, this morning marked the first time in almost two years that 270, 55/70, and 64 were backed up from at least Route 111 going into Missouri.

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