EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Cold temperatures and fog overnight have led to icy, slippery roads in some areas during the Wednesday morning commute.
Police all across Rhode Island and Massachusetts responded to multiple car crashes. Overnight crews say roads in Burrillville and North Smithfield are especially slippery.
At one point, Route 7 was shut down after a truck apparently slid off the road in Smithfield.
In the area of Douglas Pike at Matatee Road in North Smithfield, a truck crashed into a tree and burst into flames. About a quarter of a mile down the road from that accident on Douglas Pike, a pick-up truck crashed into a telephone pole, knocking it over and destroying the truck.
A garbage truck flipped onto its side on Pound Hill Road in North Smithfield. On that same road about 50 feet away, a tractor-trailer jackknifed across the street.
The multiple crashes have caused massive back-ups, causing some school buses to get stuck in the traffic.
In the Wakefield area, Route 128 was shut down on the northbound side due to multiple crashes involving dozens of vehicles. State police say 55 cars were involved in that crash.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker announced a two-hour delay for all non-emergency state employees due to the icy roads and multiple highway closures.
“We urge all drivers to exercise extreme caution as driving is very difficult due to icy conditions and to be patient as public safety officials respond to multiple incidents impacting our highways,” said Governor Baker.
Rhode Island State Police are now looking ahead to Thursday’s storm. “We are increasing our complement of troopers that will be out there,” said Capt. Matthew Moynihan. “We’ll be ready for the call volume that will be coming in.”
Moynihan also reminded those that have to drive to remove snow from your vehicle before heading out. “When it blows off and blows on to the vehicle behind, causes people to panic, it can cause accidents,” he said.