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Blog: Icy conditions causing crashes on Central Texas roads

For a second day in a row, road conditions are icy.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: This live blog is no longer updating. Check out KVUE's Saturday blog for updates on road conditions.

A wintry weather forecast is creating icy road conditions Friday morning.

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) began to pretreat bridges and overpasses on major Austin roads on Wednesday in preparation for the expected icy conditions. Several crashes, including a reported 26-car pile-up, happened across the Austin area throughout the day Thursday.

For real-time roadway conditions in your area, check DriveTexas.org.

WATCH: TxDOT explains how to drive safely during icy road conditions in Austin area

Here's a live blog tracking traffic issues in the Central Texas area.

7 p.m. - Ice build-up reported at:

  • TX 130 Toll northbound at TX 29/Exit 415
  • TX 45 Toll westbound at I-35 and at US 183 
  • US 183 SB at MoPac and at Highway 290

6:20 p.m. - Accident reported on Heatherwilde Boulevard at Wells Branch Parkway.

Accident reported on TX 45 Toll eastbound at Turnersville Road.

5:40 p.m. - Accident reported on Teri Road east of S. I-35.

5:25 p.m. - Ice buildup is reported at the following locations:

  • I-35 northbound Upper Deck near MLK Jr Boulevard
  • MoPac northbound at 45th Street
  • U.S. 183 southbound at MoPac and at Highway 290
  • TX 130 toll southbound between TX 29/Exit 415 and County Road 104/Exit 417
  • TX 45 toll eastbound at I-35
  • I-35 northbound at U.S. 290/Exit 238
  • I-35 northbound at Braker Lane
  • TX 71 westbound between Burleson Road and Woodward Street
  • TX 71 westbound at I-35
  • 290 eastbound at Berman Drive

5:20 p.m. - Accident reported on northbound I-35 near Brandt Road and the Slaughter Creek overpass.

4:50 p.m. - The southbound lane of I-35 has reopened at exit 214 after a major accident.

3:55 p.m. - An accident has been reported on US 183 southbound at MoPac, with the right lane blocked.

2:55 p.m. - Accident reported on Research Boulevard southbound at N. Lamar Boulevard.

2:54 p.m. - The 183A Toll has reopened in Cedar Park after overnight closures.

2:50 p.m. - Accident reported on Ed Bluestein Blvd. at US 290/TX 290 Toll. Traffic slowed back to Springdale Road/Manor Road.

2:35 p.m. - Accident reported on I-35 frontage road at E. Rundburg Lane. Traffic slowed back to East Braker Lane.

2:25 p.m. - Exit ramp at TX 45 Toll westbound at I-35 is closed.

Accident reported on I-35 frontage road at Wells Branch Parkway

2 p.m. - Accident reported on Parmer Lane at Riata Vista Circle/Legendary Drive.

1:25 - Accident reported on Lakeline Mall Drive at Lake Creek Parkway

1:20 p.m. - Ice buildup reported :

  • TX 130 Toll northbound at Pearce Lane/Exit 450
  • Manchaca Road northbound at West Slaughter Lane
  • TX 71 eastbound at TX 130/TX 45 Toll
  • TX 71 westbound between Burleson Road and Woodward Street
  • I-35 northbound at US 290/Exit 238
  • TX 45 Toll westbound at I-35 and US 183
  • TX 130 Toll southbound at Gregg Manor
  • I-35 upper deck northbound near MLK
  • US 183 northbound at McNeil Drive and Spicewood Springs Road
  • I-35 southbound at 51st St./Cameron Road/Exit 237

1:19 p.m - The Travis County Sheriff's Office says from 4 a.m. to noon today, deputies responded to 51 collisions. Last Friday, it responded to six in that same timeframe.

1:10 p.m. - Exit ramp blocked due to icy conditions on 290 westbound at Highway 183 (Ed Bluestein Boulevard)

Closure reported on TX Loop/MoPac Expressway northbound between Loop 360 (Capital of Texas Highway) and Barton Skyway 

Ramps blocked due to ice on US 183 southbound between McNeil Drive/Spicewood Springs Road and Braker Lane

US 183 northbound between FM 1869/Ranch Road 1869 and CO Highway 255/FM 3405 is closed.

Exit ramp closed to northbound on TX 45 Toll westbound at I035

Exit ramp blocked at MoPac northbound at Highway 183

12:50 p.m. - Over the past 24 hours, the Austin Fire department said it received 815 calls for service:

  • Collisions: 335 (four of which were vehicle rescues)
  • Wires down/arcing: 56
  • Structure fires: 18
  • Public assist (trees on roads/houses): 35

The AFD noted that in an average 24 hours, it might receive around 500 calls.

12:35 p.m. - US 183 northbound between MoPac and TX 183A is closed due to icy conditions.

12:05 p.m. - An accident was reported in Cedar Park at US 183 and Cypress Creek Road.

11:45 a.m. - All flyovers connecting I-35 and SH 45 are currently being treated for icy conditions and should be avoided. Some of the entrance ramps from Louis Henna Boulevard to SH 45 are currently closed.

11:30 a.m. - An accident was reported on I-35 southbound before Kyle Parkway/Exit 215. Traffic is stopped back to FM 2001/Exit 220.

11:25 a.m. - Ice buildup was reported on 360/Capital of Texas northbound between FM 2244/Bee Cave Road and Westlake Drive.

11:09 a.m. - I-35 southbound will be closed at Kyle Parkway, 215 exit, due to a major crash.

11 a.m. - Parts of Loop 360 will be closed as TxDOT works to treat for ice. Traffic signals may also be dark or flashing red due to power issues.

10:36 a.m. - The Kyle Fire Department is responding to a reported major collision on I-35 at the 214-mile marker. It's been reported that at least two semi-trucks are involved. There may be a fire and a person trapped. 

10:25 a.m. - The Parmer Lane Bridge is blocked in both directions between Riata Vista and Amherst/Silver Creek due to ice on the bridge over the railroad tracks. 

9 a.m. - Drivers are asked to avoid Highway 71 westbound from the 130 toll west to Oak Hill. Northbound I-35 from Highway 71 and US 290 to SH 45 should also be avoided.

8:49 a.m. - From midnight to 8:30 a.m., Austin-Travis County EMS has responded to 39 crashes. Some of those initial crashes turned into multiple collisions, ATCEMS said. Officials are asking drivers to stay home if they can.

7:29 a.m. - The weather is currently affecting CapMetro service systemwide. You should expect delays. You can sign up for MetroAlerts here.

7:13 a.m. - Travis County deputies have been had the ramp from South State Highway 45 westbound to northbound I-35 closed since 11 p.m. An 18-wheeler is stuck on the ramp. Two tow trucks have been unable to reach it due to icy conditions. 

7:09 a.m. - Eastbound State Highway 71 closed at Riverside Drive due to a crash. Detour to the frontage road if travel is required.

7:06 a.m. - The 183A Toll road is closed in both directions due to icy conditions on the roadway.

6:48 a.m. - There was a rollover collision on 5551 McKinney Falls Parkway. No one was seriously injured in the crash.

6:20 a.m. - There is a report of a rollover collision in the eastbound 5700 to 6157 block of W. US 290. Initial reports say one vehicle is involved.

6:15 a.m. - I-35 has reopened at US 290 East, but a crash has closed northbound lanes at the St. John’s Avenue exit, Exit 239.

6:06 a.m. - The southbound lanes at Interstate 35 and US 290 are closed due to multiple crashes in both directions near Exit 238, KVUE's Bryce Newberry is reporting. Northbound lanes are not closed, but are very congested.

5:46 a.m. - Emergency crews are responding to a reported vehicle rescue at northbound 6200 N. Interstate 35. There are initial reports of a two-vehicle collision with one person pinned in one of the vehicles. Avoid the area.

5:30 a.m. - Since midnight, Austin Travis County EMS said it has responded to 11 collisions, some of which were ice-related, and two cold exposures. ATCEMS said you should assume all bridges and overpasses are icy, and you should avoid unnecessary travel.

If you do have to travel and you are involved in a collision, stay in your vehicle until responders arrive and follow their instructions 

5:11 a.m. - Eastbound State Highway 71 at East Ben White Boulevard is closed due to a crash. Traffic will detour to the frontage road. 

5:08 a.m. - Southbound Interstate 35 is closed between Airport Boulevard and East 38th 1/2 Street.

4:26 a.m. - Austin emergency crews were on the scene of an ice-related crash involving an 18-wheeler and two other vehicles on eastbound Ben White Boulevard. No one was taken to a hospital.

Tips on how to drive in wintry weather

TxDOT said drivers should follow these guidelines to keep themselves and others safe:

  • Use caution when driving over bridges and overpasses, as these are the first to freeze.
  • Reduce your speed. A vehicle needs at least three times more space to stop on a slick roadway. Don't apply the brakes suddenly, and avoid using cruise control.
  • Slow down when approaching emergency or maintenance vehicles, especially when their flashing lights are on. The law requires you to maintain a distance of at least 200 feet when approaching crews. Don't pass on the right, and remember visibility can also be reduced during winter weather conditions.
  • Be patient. Keep to the main roads and avoid taking shortcuts through territory that may not have been treated.
  • Winterize vehicles before traveling during adverse weather. Check fuel, tire, oil and antifreeze levels. Make sure the heater, brakes and windshield wipers are working properly.
  • Check area weather conditions on radio or television before starting a trip.


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