Better And Better

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pogonip, again

16 degrees, heavy fog. The fog freezes, coating every thing with a hard, fuzzy crust.
Weird.

Supposed to be dangerous to breathe because of the damage that the airborne ice crystals can do to your lungs when inhaled, pogonips are pretty damned dangerous for other reasons. First off, getting to your car is an adventure. My hip aches a little where my Kimber Stainless Classic did a poor job of cushioning the iced pavement from my somewhat better-padded person. It took me 10 minutes to get the crystalline grey cobwebs off of my patrol car this morning. The light bar was unrecognizable. I had to bash the door several times to break the strangely organic-looking rime that sealed the driver's door shut. Visibility is a bitch, and people seem incapable of realizing that headlights are a MUST in heavy fog. You, in the grey Buick! You, sir or madam, should be horsewhipped for this morning's driving at 50 mph in 20 mph visibility, with no headlights on at 7:00 AM! It ain't the breathing that's the most dangerous part of a freezing fog.

Overtaking an unlighted car in the frozen soup makes for for hurried braking, on roads that can only be described as, um, interesting. There seems to be little rhyme or reason to explain what surfaces a pogonip will adhere to. The old standard of "elevated structures freeze first" doesn't necessarily follow.

This one lasted a long time. Odd spectacle.

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8 Comments:

At Thursday, January 29, 2009 9:32:00 AM, Blogger alan said...

My rule is, if there's ice on my driveway, I stay home.

It's not worth dealing with the DFW demolition derby.

 
At Thursday, January 29, 2009 2:04:00 PM, Blogger DMP said...

I'm sure it's global warming. Your driving scares me. Slow, no sudden changes, that is the key to success in icy driving conditions. DMP

 
At Thursday, January 29, 2009 2:05:00 PM, Blogger Crucis said...

I've heard that weather like that in knows as "population control" in Texas. :-)

I've spent time in San Antonio when a light snow occurred. I watched the show on IH-410 during "rush" hour. A real demolition derby.

 
At Thursday, January 29, 2009 7:07:00 PM, Blogger Old NFO said...

I agree with Alan. If I can't walk to the car without busting my butt, I go back in the house.

 
At Friday, January 30, 2009 7:56:00 AM, Blogger Jay G said...

"My rule is, if there's ice on my driveway, I stay home."

I understand y'all are in Texas, which has different paradigms insofar as weather and weather-related traffic happenings.

But I read that line and I thought, hell, if that were the case for me I'd spend more time indoors than James Caan in "Misery"...

 
At Friday, January 30, 2009 8:26:00 AM, Anonymous John Peddie (Toronto) said...

Can you get auto lock de-icer where you are?

Also, duct tape has many uses, including as a covering for car door locks, padlocks etc. if you expect freezing rain.

Carrying a cigarette lighter to warm keys before inserting into frozen locks also helps.

(I live in balmy Toronto now, but spent a lot of time further north, where -40 temps were common and 0 was a sign of spring):-)

 
At Saturday, January 31, 2009 6:57:00 AM, Blogger Buffboy said...

Actually fog is only dangerous to your lungs at less than -20F. That's when it will cut your lungs and nasal passages breathing it. It kills humans and animals. Fortunately fog a that low temperature is very rare. It doesn't coat your vehicle or the roads with ice because it's already super frozen.
I wish I could do what Alan does when there's ice but I'd never get to work for months at a time.

 
At Monday, February 02, 2009 8:41:00 AM, Blogger John B said...

Well alan, I'm sure if Matt had been given a choice in the matter, He'd have chose a warm fire, and the company of his nearest and dearest. The words "Kimber Stainless" and "Lightbar" sort of make me think he was not his own master in the matter. I can't speak for Texan Taxpayers, but here in Freezy Washington State, we're glad the forces of Law and Order, are out there.

 

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