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Ice causes huge Saugus accident

SAUGUS-Ice froze onto North Shore roads Sunday night as fast as the afternoon’s snow bursts came and went, resulting in a massive multi-car accident involving at least 10 cars on the Lynn Marsh Road (Rte. 107) on the Saugus-Revere line.As soon as the ice froze at about 7 p.m., hundreds of cars became stranded on the highway. Between 10 and 30 cars crashed and two utility poles snapped bringing power lines down across Rte. 107 at that time, according to Saugus Fire Capt. Don Shea.”One of my guys has 35 years as a firefighter and he said this accident was the worst he’s ever seen,” Shea said. “This accident is probably the worst in volume that I’ve had.”Both sides of the highway were closed for nearly two hours, stranding hundreds of motorists with nowhere to go.Many of the cars involved in accidents simply spun out or slid and hit the curb, but others were more severely damaged, including one car that landed entirely in a marsh and could only be noticed because its headlights were shining through the darkness, Shea said.”This is something you hear about in Florida when fog suddenly comes across the road,” he said.As police began to slowly let southbound traffic move again around 9 p.m., Saugus police reported that an Alzheimer’s patient from Lynn, who had been sitting with his granddaughter in an automobile for two hours, was missing after walking away from his car.Amazingly, Shea said there were no reports of serious injuries, but about 10 people were brought to area hospitals with “neck and whip lash-type injuries.””It could have been a lot worse,” he said.The fire department captain said a combination of snow, and then rain, then snow again throughout the afternoon with a sudden drop in temperatures in the early evening led to a “perfect combination” of weather events that led to the sudden icing.”The whole town came to a standstill,” Shea said.After the ice froze around 7 p.m., police in Lynn, Revere and Saugus were inundated with reports of dozens of accidents at the same time.By 7:40 p.m., a dispatcher on the Lynn Police Department’s radio frequency issued a statement not to police, but to citizens who were listening to their police scanners: “To the citizens of Lynn: If you do not need to go out, please remain in your houses at this time,” she said.The message came too late for dozens of drivers involved in accidents around the city.Around 7:15 p.m., a Toyota Rav 4 slid off South Common Street and into a tree on Lynn Common. Police closed both North and South Common streets for about an hour.At 7:18, a police officer responding to an accident on Walnut Street said that car after car was losing control and crashing into other vehicles on the icy road.Another accident partially shut down North Shore Road (Rte. 1A) near the intersection of Revere Street in Revere.A two-car accident with injuries was reported at Central and Seville streets in Saugus at about 7:10 p.m.

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