Shortage of Odessa Ambulances Caused by Hundreds of Wrecks on Icy Roads

Shortage of Odessa Ambulances Caused by Hundreds of Wrecks on Icy Roads

By Julia Deng
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - Frozen roads continued causing wreck after wreck on Wednesday, leaving Odessa with a shortage of city ambulances.

"The call load is so high, we are utilizing private ambulances," Andrea Goodson, spokesperson for the City of Odessa, said.

Odessa Police responded to more than ten crashes per hour through most of Wednesday.

Between Tuesday morning and Wednesday evening, they were called to the scene of more than 140 accidents, according to Odessa Police spokesman, Steve LeSueur.

"This is an incredibly high number and we need everybody to avoid driving, if possible," he said.

Meanwhile, Midland Police responded to more than 130 accidents during the same time period.

Drivers reported being unable to brake at red lights and stop signs and inadvertently sliding through intersections.

"We're not used to this weather at all," Catherine Carrasco said. "Fortunately, we haven't gotten hurt or gotten into any accidents on these roads. But we slid a few times and there was a truck in front of us that did a 360."

She chose to "stay home with the kiddos" on New Year's Eve and stayed off the roads Wednesday night.

Paul Hoogewind told NewsWest 9 he "had no choice" and had to navigate the frozen highways.

"I have a company I have to work for and things have to get done," he said.

As of Wednesday night, Highway 191 is closed between FM 1788 and Loop 250, all entrances to Loop 250 west of Fairgrounds Road also remain closed. However, Loop 250 service roads are open.