Myriad of crashes close down Deerfoot Trail
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Myriad of crashes close down Deerfoot Trail

Last Updated Feb 4, 2018 at 9:27 am MDT

The view from a traffic camera on Deerfoot Trail at the Calf Robe Bridge. Saturday, February 3rd, 2018. (Alberta 511)

The high number of crashes on Calgary’s Deerfoot Trail caused the closure of the major thoroughfare Saturday afternoon.

By 8:30 p.m. that evening both north and southbound Deerfoot Trail were finally cleared and opened to drivers.

At around noon, the major route was completely shut down from McKnight Blvd. to Anderson Road because of numerous collisions and treacherous driving conditions.

Between midnight and 4 p.m. on Saturday, police say they received 238 reports of collisions, 27 of them involving injuries.

660NEWS listener Jessica Hausauer spent 30 minutes on southbound Deerfoot before the closure.

“Just before you get to the Memorial turnoff, there’s about 25 vehicles, mostly on the left hand side and there’s a handful on the right hand side of the road. And most of them have either completely lost their front ends or back ends. It’s a mess.”

City of Calgary Roads Spokesperson Chris McGeachy says they have all hands on deck, with the maximum amount of equipment on the roads, but it will still be a challenge due to the frigid temperatures and heavy snowfall.

“We have also called in our contracted partners to help us with some of the snow clearing, so we’re hoping that will help us be able to overcome it.”

The storm isn’t a surprise, and crews have been laying down some de-icing material over the last few days to prepare, but the major routes will be the only ones getting cleared immediately.

“For the first 24 hours, we’re focused on clearing the Priority 1 routes, those are (Crowchild and Glenmore Trails.) Then we move on to Priority 2 in the second 24 hours. It’s typically after those first 48 hours that we start getting into the P3’s and P4’s, which include some of the residential areas.”

In the meantime, McGeachy and the police urge drivers to be extra careful in these conditions, slow down, and give lots of room to plow crews working hard in this weather.

You can also get live updates on plow positions by heading to the city’s website.