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Winter weather causes traffic headaches in Northwest Arkansas

A backup on I-49 southbound near West Fork caused traffic delays for upwards of an hour and a half or longer as crews worked to clear the scene.

WEST FORK, Ark. — Southbound traffic on I-49 was backed up for a few miles Wednesday, Jan. 19, and the Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) says there were two stalled semis causing the delay.

During the traffic jam, Arkansans jumped into action to help.

"We’ve done about 25 to 30 cars, so far in the last few hours,” said Cal Green with Smith Towing. He and his co-worker helped vehicles stuck on Exit 53 to West Fork. 

Heavy snow and sleet were in parts of the Northwest Arkansas area caused traffic backups for miles on I-49 as many drivers were on their evening commute home. 

Washington County road crews worked against the clock to get bridges and highways treated. 

Road crews say if you don't have to get outside, then don't, but if you must, take your time.

“Give yourself a little extra time,” said Crawford County Road Superintendent Chris Keith. “Take it a little slower, really watch those curbs and those bridges and stuff and the over passes. Those are the ones that are going to freeze the quickest and fastest."

On the roads, most were trying to drive slow and cautiously but still ran into issues.

"I was hitting the breaks sliding to the right, sliding off the road,” said Jace Hartje. “I saw a couple of cars stuck. Trying to get up hills and stuff."

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