Icy conditions pose problems for drivers in Central Texas

Icy conditions briefly closed part of the SH-45 tollway Monday morning.

The brunt of the morning freeze was felt in the western part of Williamson County.

A thin coat of ice covered trees limbs, street signs, and car windows across Austin's northern metro communities.

For commuters like Thien Huynh, it was a chilly and unexpected start to the work week.

"It was pretty much a surprise. I didn't think it was going to be that cold. Actually, I had a cup of water last night and the ice is still frozen from last night, so I guess it was that cold, said Huynh.

For some on SH 45, the Monday morning rush started with a crash. Slick spots caused about a half dozen wrecks in Round Rock between the Kelly Lane exit and I-35. Westbound lanes of the tollway were briefly closed so damaged vehicles could be hauled away.

Those caught up in the back up like Joan Berler could only sit and wait.

"Well, I have a half a tank of gas, so I think I'm alright," said Berler.

Road crews were deployed with de-icing solution - several sand trucks were also sent out and staged near flyovers. The slippery conditions were not widespread and blustery conditions contributed to most of the ice that formed.

That strong wind threatened to snap the power lines. Thats why the entrance to New Hope Rd. at 1431 in Cedar Park was closed down.

Utility poles twisted under the stress. The dangerous situation was spotted by Jim Kinter.

"I saw the wires galloping and I said that don't look right. So at 8:00 a.m. when the call center opened, I called it in," said Kinter.

Heavy accumulation remained well to the north, which is why Darren O'Neal didn't feel too bad about venturing out in short pants.

"It's not too bad. The wind makes it a little rough but otherwise it's not too cold," said O'Neal.


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