First Round of Snow Swamps Towing Agencies

Updated: 12/08/2012 10:16 PM KSTP.com By: Katherine Johnson

Tow agencies throughout the Twin Cities are fielding twice as many calls as usual. With just one inch of snow overnight Friday, impound lots are packed.

"I think people forget how to drive in the wintertime," said driver Nicole Smiley.

Smiley is emptying her now totaled car after a driver slid on the ice and smashed into her last night.

"All of the sudden, a car just came around the median and just came at us head on," she said.

It's not just the new ice causing problems.  Many haven't even looked at their winter equipment for months. This morning, maintenance worker Tom Mathison's wheel popped off his bobcat just as he was getting ready to clear the roads.

"It's a little slick, just needs a little salt," he said.  "But this is only round one.  Round two is going to be a lot worse."

And as round two of snowfall approaches the metro, Smiley will be busing to work and walking to the grocery store.

"You use your car for so much stuff.  To get to work, get to family, friends, holiday shopping, so it's going to impact my life a lot," she said.  "It's going to probably take months at least to wrap it all up."

So Smiley collects her belongings and says goodbye to her car of ten years only to head home and start the paperwork with her worried mother in tow.

"We were just happy that we were safe and sound.  You can replace this but you can't replace people."

Tow truck agencies say the most calls they get come from drivers going on and off the highways and going over icy bridges too quickly.  They only expect those numbers to go up Saturday night as the storm moves through the metro.