VANCOUVER, Wash. -- Frosty morning conditions sent Clark County firefighters scrambling for a third straight day.
They've been busy with broken water pipes, people falling on the ice and dozens of car crashes. Wednesday morning four separate wrecks occurred on I-5 southbound near the Ridgefield exit. Two semi-trucks slid on the ice, crashing into each other, and several other cars spun around causing miles of backups.
One of the crashes trapped a man inside his pickup truck. Clark Co. Fire and Rescue used the jaws of life to cut him from his car.
Firefighters said he slid on black ice across both lanes and flipped into a watery ditch on N.E. 182nd Ave. and Ward Rd., in Brush Prairie. With this fog laying down out here, in the lowlands, it is obviously putting a sheet of ice on the roads, said Battalion Chief Jeff Stewart.
Studded tires helped some drivers, but there was no escaping even minor sliding on Clark County roads. There, the white film wasn't snow and wasn't traditional ice - it was freezing fog.
It's like frozen ice, frozen snow, frozen ground, frozen fog, said 9th-grade student Vincent Winslow. It was pretty bad.
He should know. He's one of those kids who wears shorts every day, no matter what. But today might have been a mistake. It's pretty harsh. We didn't expect it, he said. It was actually really slippery coming out of the house because it was just freezing all morning.
For two days straight,Winslow and his sister didn't get the message school was delayed and made the long walk from their house to the bus stop.
We kind of just stayed because our house is so far away and we just stayed at the bus stop, Winslow said. It was pretty cold, it was not fun to go through.
Luckily someone driving by told them of the 2-hour delay, that later turned into an outright cancellation for the Vancouver School District.