Numerous crashes keep MHP, BPD hopping on snowy Friday

2014-03-21T08:35:00Z 2014-03-21T16:39:07Z Numerous crashes keep MHP, BPD hopping on snowy FridayGazette Staff The Billings Gazette
March 21, 2014 8:35 am  • 

Snowfall and slick streets Friday morning kept law enforcement officers busy responding to accidents in the Billings area during the morning commute, including one that closed Zimmerman Trail.

No serious injuries were reported.

Billings police officers temporarily closed Zimmerman Trail, between Rimrock Road and Highway 3, after a one-vehicle rollover accident at 8 a.m.

Police Sgt. Justin Jaegers said a Toyota Camry was southbound on Zimmerman Trail when it attempted to slow for a curve and started skidding. The car slid to the inside curve, hit the concrete drainage ditch and overturned. The 54-year-old male driver was not ticketed.

In another rollover at 8:38 a.m. at 54th Street West and Rimrock Road, the driver of a Ford Explorer was pinned briefly and had to be extricated by the Billings Fire Department, Jaegers said.

The Explorer was eastbound on Rimrock when the 45-year-old female driver lost control on the slick road and rolled the vehicle into the ditch. The driver was transported to the hospital by ambulance with non-life threatening injuries.

Four or five vehicles also were involved in a pile-up that occured on the Montana Avenue overpass by Sixth Street West, the sergeant said.  

The flurry of snow quickly turned dry streets into icy roads.

Within less than an hour, Jaegers said, the department went from having all officers available to none available with calls holding because of accidents. 

By mid-morning, the snow had almost stopped and roads were wet.

The Montana Highway Patrol also had reports of a number of accidents on Interstates 90 and 94.

Billings can expect scattered snow showers on Friday with a 50 percent chance of snow, cloudy skies and a high near 31 degrees. North winds will be up to 22 mph. An accumulation of less than an inch of snow is possible.

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