I pulled over to the side and noticed another victim: this pickup truck, which had slid into one of the bigger trucks. Fortunately no one was hurt.
As we sat there, the road department truck came by. You can almost see the bright orange truck through my extremely dirty and cracked windshield.
I tried to get a picture of the driver because he's got a great smile (and I know him), but he told me I had to close my window, so I only got a shot of him spreading sand on the road. The extra traction really helped, and I was able to drive around the stranded truck on the shoulder of the road and continue.
But around the next curve I saw more trouble: two more semis off the road. A state patrol officer and a big tow truck were there trying to sort out the mess.
The big road department truck hadn't been able to negotiate around those trucks, so the road was just a sheet of ice on the other side. Two semis had stopped, and I noticed the drivers were putting on chains.
I never had to put chains on my pickup truck until I moved out West. It's a pain in the butt, and semi trucks have to put on extra chains. I suppose it beats a towing bill.
In case you haven't seen what tire chains look like, here's a photo out my dirty side window. Someday I really should clean my truck windows.
So the moral of this post is be careful driving in icy conditions! They can sneak up on you fast. I carry a safety kit in the back of the truck with blankets, tire chains, cat litter (for extra traction), a tool kit, water, food, and the most important: a book, so I have something to read if I have to wait a long time for help.