Multiple crashes reported as first wintry weather arrives in Douglas County

photo by: Douglas County Sheriff's Office

Emergency vehicles respond to cars that have slid off the road in the 1300 block of North 300 Road, just east of Baldwin Junction, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020.

Story updated at 3:01 p.m. Monday:

First responders were called for multiple injury crashes Monday as snow and ice arrived in Douglas County.

In preparation for the first day of wintry weather this season, Douglas County crews worked overnight to treat roads, but they were still icy in some areas and ranged from spotty to covered in a few others, according to a 6:30 a.m. Facebook post from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.

From just after 6:30 a.m. through 2 p.m. Monday, Lawrence police worked two injury crashes and three non-injury crashes, Patrick Compton, a spokesperson for the police department, said via email.

Around 12:45 p.m., Lawrence police were at the scene of an injury crash on Clinton Parkway near the intersection at Kasold Drive. Clinton Parkway was reduced to one eastbound lane at the intersection because of the crash, the department said on social media.

photo by: Lawrence Police Department

Lawrence police respond to a crash on Clinton Parkway near the intersection of Kasold Drive, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020.

As of 2 p.m., Compton said police were still investigating that crash, but there did not appear to be any life-threatening injuries.

The Kansas Highway Patrol responded to one injury crash on the eastbound ramp from 23rd Street to eastbound Kansas Highway 10, according to an online report.

In that incident, a vehicle lost control and hit the barrier wall around 8:24 a.m. Monday, according to the report. The driver, a 40-year-old Lawrence man, was not injured, but his passenger, a 37-year-old Lawrence woman, suffered suspected minor injuries and was taken to Lawrence’s hospital, according to the report.

Jenn Hethcoat, public information officer for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, said around 11:30 a.m. that she didn’t have specific numbers of incidents or crashes yet, because most of that department’s personnel were still out on the road.

However, she said the department had close to 20 calls for assistance that included two minor injury crashes, motorist assists, slide-offs and non-injury crashes. The majority of those calls came between 8 and 9 a.m. Monday, she said.

“There were other slide-offs that did not generate new calls, mainly in areas deputies were already dispatched, where motorists were able to call for tow service or drive themselves back onto the road,” Hethcoat said via email.

In a social media post early Monday, the sheriff’s office said there were multiple cars spinning and sliding off the road on Kansas Highway 10 between Lawrence and Eudora, and in the 1300 block of North 300 Road on Highway 56, just east of Baldwin Junction.

The weather conditions were expected to continue Monday, according to the National Weather Service in Topeka.

“Snow continues through early morning across much of the area before patchy light freezing drizzle may once again be possible by (Monday) evening,” according to the NWS website. “Expecting a general 1 to 3 inches of snow will have fallen across the area with locally heavier amounts especially over east central Kansas.”

The winter weather advisory will continue through Tuesday and into Wednesday, the NWS reported.

“Tuesday evening into Wednesday morning may once again see a period where a wintry mix could occur across portions of the area mainly south of Interstate 70,” according to the NWS website. “Mainly light freezing drizzle or rain may be possible before transitioning to all rain takes place by Wednesday morning.”

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