A mother recounted begging emergency personnel for help as she felt scared for her children’s lives while they were stuck for hours in freezing temperature conditions while in a traffic jam on a Virginia highway on Tuesday.
Vania Masaya was one of the thousands of people stuck for more than 20 hours along the nearly 50-mile Interstate 95 (I95)on Monday and Tuesday. This came about following a combination of several overturned tractor-trailers on the road, heavy snowfall, and layers of ice that served as hurdles for transportation crews in clearing the highway.
Masaya was also one of many drivers who ran out of fuel while sitting in the traffic jam all while the temperatures dropped into the 20s. She and her kids weren’t able to move from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday, causing her to grow scared for their safety.
The mother asked for help when an EMS worker went to her window.
“I was begging, ‘Can you please just take my kids? You don’t need to take us, just take my kids, please,'” Masaya said in an interview with TODAY Wednesday. “I kept thinking they’re going to die in this cold.
“It was freezing. My daughter’s cheeks were so cold,” she also noted.
The EMS worker took Masaya and her kids to an ambulance. There, they spent the night and rested until Tuesday morning.
Virginia state officials blamed plunging temperatures and rapid snowfall for contributing to the debacle. Prior to snow falling, sleet and rain became several inches of ice, which prevented tow trucks from moving the trailer trucks blocking the highway.
Due to the situation, many drivers had to choose between conserving fuel or staying warm. It became even worse when gas stations nearby ran out of fuel or didn’t have power.
A lot of people abandoned their cars after running out of gas and not having anything to eat or drink.
Many abandoned their cars after running out of gas and having little to eat or drink. A local bakery truck stuck in the jam passed out bread to people in dozens of cars.
Luckily, even with this bleak incident, state officials reported that no one had been injured. By Wednesday morning, traffic on the highway was flowing normally once again.
Despite the bleak situation, Virginia officials said no one was injured during the ordeal, and traffic was once again flowing normally along the I95 by Wednesday morning.