Re: Pileups Reported on Snow-Covered Roads (

From: mec (
Date: Thu Feb 22 2001 - 17:59:42 PST

> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Chuck Murcko" <>
> >And BTW, WTF is "black ice"? This term seems to have become popular last
> decade and I haven't noticed a new phase of water or >anything, just the
> same stuff that's always been frozen on the roads. Or is it some kind of
> doofus mental aid?
> "Black Ice" is that patchy stuff you don't see until you're slipping on

Black ice looks like a wet patch of road. It is not.
It is a thin layer of ice that is smoother and slicker
than opaque ice... so slick that it is perfect for
boot-skiing ballerinas. ha ha

I'm guessing that the clarity has to do with less air trapped
inside the freezing water... kinda like clear chunks chopped out
of the middle of an ice block almost invisible in Dewars liquid

We have a long acquaintance with black ice in the Virginia
highlands although I first encountered that dreaded term in
Germany many years ago.

Allow me to set up the weather conditions yesterday thru this
morning. We had several days of clear, sunny skys with crisp
but above-freezing daytime temps. Snow was in the forecast
for last night but there was zero indication of percipitation.
Late in the day I decided to trek out a couple of hours' drive
to Va. Tech to pay birthday respects to a grad student friend.
Arrived back home late evening under clear starry skies though
the temp had dropped to 30-28. Lights out around 1:30 with still
no noticeable weather change.

I woke up around 5:30 to what sounded like fine sand pelleting
my windows. Wind carrying fine "dry" snow. It "glazed" the roads
around here at first. Finally accumulation was only 3-4 inches
but it was much slicker to navigate than the 10" at Christmas.



<------ oneway ------>

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