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Slick Mat-Su Roads Lead to Rise in Morning Traffic Calls

By Chris Klint, Senior Digital Producer, cklint@ktuu.com
Published On: Nov 14 2013 10:37:49 AM AKST
Updated On: Nov 14 2013 10:50:15 AM AKST
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -

Slick roads in the Mat-Su Borough have led to a spike in traffic incidents Thursday, according to law enforcement and school officials.

Alaska State Troopers spokesperson Megan Peters says no severe crash has dominated Thursday’s responses, with troopers and Wasilla police responding to a combined total of 19 “traffic-related issues” including crashes since midnight.

“It hasn’t been any one big thing -- it’s been a series of little things,” Peters said.

Mat-Su Borough School District spokesperson Catherine Esary says initial news reports and online posts earlier Thursday that three school buses operated by contractor First Student had been involved in crashes were inaccurate, saying they instead ended up in ditches. One bus on Wasilla Fishhook Road had to be recovered, but the other two were able to get themselves out of the ditches.

“There were a couple that slid off the road because they didn’t chain up,” Esary said. "We have had no bus accidents."

Channel 2 meteorologist David George says freezing drizzle overnight in the Mat-Su is likely a contributing factor to the crash reports, settling into grooves on roads formed by previous snowfall which appear clear but are actually slick.

“They probably get a little overconfident driving in those tracks, and that’s when they lose control,” George said.

Peters says drivers should slow down and try to maintain adequate spacing between vehicles Thursday.