After having been stuck on Alabama's Interstate 65 for more than 19 hours, LaSalle residents Joe Bencze and his wife Diane Gibbs were ready to be home.
Tired, hungry and dirty after their snow-bound ordeal, the couples initial plan was to take a scenic drive through the southern US states while on their way home from vacationing in Florida. Unfortunately, just outside of Birmingham, AL they began to encounter the bad weather that has crippled much of the mid west and southern United States, along with the miles of stationary vehicles.
Ms. Gibb recalls:
We saw the rain and the sleet, but you know, were Canadian, were used to that..... But then the road got really icy.
There were trucks hitting them, other people banging into them, sliding and spinning out of control, hitting guard rails. We saw so many cars that were totaled.
With little to no food, many other motorists that were stuck in the same traffic jam hunkered down for the night and began to share whatever food was available. While help was reported as being on it's way, the heavily congested traffic was making it difficult for road crews to clear and clean the accidents that littered the interstate.
When traffic started to inch forward by approximately 9 a.m the next morning, in an attempt to get out of the gridlock, the couple decided to duck through traffic to the nearest available exit, in the hopes of getting fuel and some food, but unfortunately, nothing was open.
Gibb said, "It was like a ghost town".
However, they were able to secure a room at a Comfort Inn, and by Thursday, the couple were able to get back on the roads to make their way home.
As a final parting comment, Ms. Gibb added:
".... I think next year, we're going to fly".
At the law offices of Greg Monforton & Partners, we urge all Canadian motorists that are currently in the US to use caution while navigating through the current snow storm that is working it's way through the mid and southern eastern states.