New York Car Pile-Up Latest in Series of Icy Crashes

Texas family stuck on frozen highway for 26 hours.

ByABC News
December 9, 2013, 12:12 PM

Dec. 9, 2013— -- A massive car pileup that injured 35 people on the Bronx River Parkway on Sunday night was the latest in a series of traffic accidents that damaged hundreds of cars and left people stranded on frozen highways in several parts of the country.

Ice snow and rain are being blamed for creating treacherous driving conditions which led to the crash that happened around 11 p.m. Sunday on the Bronx River Parkway in Westchester County just north of the New York City line.

Photos show cars piled on top of one another, but a spokesman for the Westchester County Police Department said most of the cars were travelling slowly at the time.

"Most of the collisions were at very low speed. You're talking about a lot of people bouncing around in their cars," Keiran o'Leary told ABC News. "It's hard to explain the physics of it, but there's a slight downhill grade there which might have contributed."

A 50-car pile-up on the Pennsylvania Turnpike near Morgantown left one driver dead and dozens of motorists stranded on the state turnpike for hours in the middle of a major snowstorm on Sunday afternoon.

According to ABC station WPVI-TV in Philadelphia, the motorist who died in the collisions was killed when he got out of the car and was hit by another car around 12:30 p.m. The massive pile up left motorists stranded for seven hours.

In the South the conditions were no better, with a deadly multi-vehicle pileup on I-10 in West Texas on Saturday morning claiming at least one life. The tangle of wrecked vehicles left dozens of blocked travelers shivering in their cars for more than day.

“We left 26 hours ago. I have been sitting in the same spot. I have not moved one foot from exit 380 in 11 hours," said David Daugherty who was stuck in his car for over 26 hours with his wife and 2-year-old child while en route to Dallas Fort Worth Airport. "It’s actually pretty much completely impassible.”

He said one woman tried to help feed some of the trapped motorists.

“There’s a lady that works for IWX Motor Freight. She is literally taking her own food with her and heating it up in her truck with a microwave and going from car to car trying to give what little bit of food and water she has just for the stranded motorists,” Daugherty said.

“I’ve tried calling the police department, I’ve tried calling everybody and I can’t even get hardly anyone to answer the phone.”

"I would say at least 2 inches of ice completely across the entire road," Daugherty said."I'm actually a truck driver and I've been driving roads for 18 years and I have never seen it ever just at a complete standstill."

Storms also stranded about 300 motorists along the Utah-Arizona border after parts of the high were closed and up to 10 inches of snow reported. No serious injuries were immediately reported.

A crash on I-81 in Maryland on Sunday involving more than 20 vehicles left traffic backed up and delayed snow removal efforts. The highway remained closed for over three hours following an accident involving a spun-out tractor-trailer that was hit by another tractor-trailer that flipped and spilled its load. Other vehicles attempting to avoid the crash ran off the road.

ABC News' Gillian Mohney and The AP contributed to this report.