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Some LI roads icy; drivers urged to be cautious

According to a witness, the driver of a

According to a witness, the driver of a Ford Bronco was heading south on Indian Head Road in Commack when his vehicle slammed into the guardrail and flipped three times. The driver suffered non-life-threatening injuries. (Dec. 22, 2009) Credit: Peter Walden Sr.

Two days after the Blizzard of '09, the National Weather Service is reminding drivers that they still need to be careful.

"Some melting of the snowpack occurred across the region Monday," a special weather statement read. "Widespread subfreezing temperatures overnight caused water on any untreated surfaces to refreeze."

As a result, the weather service warned drivers to "use extreme caution" because morning roads "could be icy."

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Certainly, conditions are not what they were Monday, when a series of weather-related crashes -- most of them minor -- dominated the morning rush hour. Those crashes included at least three overturned vehicles, accidents attributed to treacherous black ice.

Police say the number of motor vehicle accidents over the weekend was significantly higher than normal.

Suffolk County police said there were 602 crashes from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 p.m. Monday on local roadways.

The Suffolk County sheriff's department, which patrols the county portions of Sunrise Highway and the Long Island Expressway, reported 188 motor vehicle accidents and 261 calls for disabled motorists in the same period.

The State Police, which handles the state parkways, said its officers responded to 91 accidents on Saturday and Sunday.

In Nassau, police reported 287 accidents over the weekend.

On Tuesday, the accident pace appears to have slowed -- all while traffic is getting back up to speed, police said.

The weather service predicted sunshine Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, with temperatures hovering in the low-to-mid 30s on Tuesday. There is a chance of freezing rain and sleet on Christmas Day, forecasters said.

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