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Ice contributes to Portland rollover accident

January 14, 2016
By Rebecca Cuthbert , Westfield Republican

PORTLAND - Despite warmer temperatures, winter weather is partially to blame for a rollover accident that occurred on Webster Road shortly before 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 8 according to Brocton Fire Chief Jim Rizzo and New York State Trooper Calvin Saletta.

Reports say the driver of a car heading east lost control of her vehicle, at which point the car left the roadway, hit a ditch and flipped over, landing on its roof.

"The roads were dry for the most part," said Saletta, "but there were what we call 'slush grooves' on the roadway, a build-up of slush and ice along the sides and in the middle of the road.

Article Photos

Photo by Dan Kohler
Authorities said a build-up of slush and ice along the sides and in the middle of the road caused this vehicle to go off the road and flip over.

"When the driver took the corner, she got far enough over to where all four of her tires were on ice, and she lost traction."

Along with the State Police, Chautauqua County Sheriff's deputies, the Portland Fire Department and the Brocton Fire Department responded.

"There was only one occupant in the car," said Rizzo. "We transported her to the hospital."

Saletta said the woman, whose name was not released, complained of pain. The firefighters had to remove her from her overturned car by cutting her seatbelt.

"When a car is upside down, (an occupant) puts a lot of pressure on the seatbelt," he said. "It's hard to release that button then, so it's more efficient to cut the seatbelt to remove the victim (of an accident)."

At the time of this report, the extent of the driver's injuries were unknown. However, Saletta reported she did receive a ticket for moving from her lane unsafely.

Drivers are advised to use more caution as bad weather continues. Travel at safe speeds and make sure tires, windshield wipers and defrosters are in good condition. Leave plenty of time for travel, and pack an emergency kit in the trunk for when bad gets to worse.



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