Idaho


Icy, Snow-Covered Roads Prove Treacherous Accidents Abound In North Idaho

The snow was only temporary, but expect the slippery conditions to hang around for a couple of days.

Snow-covered roads in the Inland Northwest likely will turn icier today, making driving conditions more hazardous until temperatures climb into the 40s this weekend.

Today and Friday, they’ll hover in the mid30s, said John Livingston, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Spokane. The snow will turn to rain, which will continue off and on through the weekend ahead.

“It’s going to be wet,” Livingston said. “But at least by Saturday it’ll be warmer.”

The storm resulted in minor accidents throughout North Idaho and Eastern Washington on Wednesday.

North Idaho authorities responded to more than 50 accidents, including one that claimed the life of a 46-year-old Wallace woman.

Patricia Hampton was pronounced dead when officials arrived at an accident scene near Silverton, Idaho, at about 3:35 p.m.

Shoshone County Lt. Spike Angle said Hamptons’ Toyota was westbound on Silver Valley Road near Silverton when she crossed a railroad track and slid into the eastbound lane.

A pickup driven by Oliver Lunde, 80, of Silverton, struck Hampton’s car on the driver’s side. Lunde suffered only minor injuries, Angle said.

A passenger in Hampton’s car, a 17-yearold girl, was transported to Shoshone Medical Center, then flown to Kootenai Medical Center. She was in stable condition Wednesday evening.

By 4 p.m. Coeur d’Alene police had already handled 11 accidents. During one of those accidents, one car slid into the back of another. One of the drivers then got out of his vehicle and walked in between the two cars, where he was pinned after a third car smashed into the wreckage, said Lt. Greg Surplus.

Icy conditions sent two North Idaho school buses sliding off roads. One slipped off of Carpenter Loop Road and another slid off state Highway 53. No one was injured.

A Coeur d’Alene School District special education bus was rear-ended by a car at the intersection of 16th and Montana streets, said Don Arthur, the district’s transportation director. The two pre-school children on board were not hurt.

A bus transporting two dozen Lapwai Junior-Senior High School students rolled over Wednesday morning on treacherous roads south of Moscow, sending the passengers and driver to a Moscow hospital.

The Lapwai bus slid and rolled on U.S. Highway 95 between Moscow and Lewiston, about 10 miles north of Genesee, the Latah County sheriff’s office said.

The bus was on its side when emergency crews arrived at about 10:30 a.m. The 23 students, two chaperones and a bus driver were transported to Gritman Medical Center in Moscow.

Most had suffered minor injuries, but there were a few with more serious head and neck injuries. The most serious one appeared to be a head trauma, said Candace Haley, Gritman community relations director.

Ambulance crews withstood blizzard-like conditions to extricate those from the bus. The highway was closed for an hour.



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