The blizzard that hit Chicago on Feb. 1, 2011 left a lot of motorists angry because they got stranded on Lake Shore Drive and had to leave their cars behind. There have been many questions about the traffic management in Chicago, with motorists asking why Lake Shore Drive had not been closed sooner.
City of Chicago officials provided an update on the morning of Feb. 2, 2011 regarding the blizzard including response to vehicles stranded on Lake Shore Drive. The officials had scheduled another press conference for this evening, but cancelled that portion of the conference, Mayor Daley has not personally made any statement about blizzard situation today.
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“Chicago residents should know that we are working with every possible resource to address the effects of the storm, and we’ve been monitoring City activities from our command center throughout the night,” said Raymond Orozco, Chief of Staff to the Mayor. “Our focus remains on maintaining the public safety of our residents, while also trying to keep the City’s main arterial streets clear.”
Wind chills in the City are also likely to reach 20 to 30 degrees below zero tonight, and the National Weather Service has issued a Wind Chill Advisory for this evening.
Slideshow: Pictures of Lake Shore Drive during Blizzard 2011
Slideshow: Pictures of Chicago in Winter Storm 2011
Following is the statement from Raymond Orozco regarding the Lake Shore Drive situation:
While Lake Shore Drive traffic was moving effectively with motorists going home from work, as the weather conditions started to rapidly deteriorate, a number of multiple-car accidents occurred on the northbound drive, some of them in close succession.
There were three accidents between Fullerton and Belmont between 7:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. One of those accidents involved a bus. Those were immediately followed by two accidents south of Fullerton Parkway.
This caused a large number of motorists and CTA buses to become stuck behind and around these accidents, in addition to many vehicles becoming immobilized due to the high winds and rapid snow accumulation during this time period, as well as off-ramps that became impassable.
The result of this rapid series of events was that hundreds of vehicles that were stuck and/or abandoned on Lake Shore Drive for many hours during the night, including several CTA buses.The City immediately moved to close Lakeshore Drive before 8 p.m.
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