On Jan. 11 at 8 a.m., heading out to work, I pulled out of my driveway at the top of the hill on Cook Street in New Auburn and immediately started sliding down the steep grade. The road was a sheet of ice and had been ignored by the sanding crews, again.

A block down, my car came to rest against a snowbank but was sticking straight out across the road. The car would not move. I tried to get out of my car but started sliding, so I got back in and called 911.

Shortly thereafter, a car came down the hill, out of control. It somehow missed my car and came to rest against a snowbank farther down. It also stuck out into the road. The driver, a young girl, yelled to me that she could not get out of her car and was terrified that someone would come down and crash into her.

I called 911 again. Nothing happened. Forty-five minutes passed and we hoped someone had put a “road closed” sign out on the top of the hill.

Then, we saw an SUV.

Out of control, it careened down the hill, smashing into the back of my car. I watched in horror as it continued downhill and obliterated that girl’s car.

I was screaming the third time I called 911. No one came to save us. Why?

Someone must be held accountable.

David Courtemanche, Auburn

Editor’s note: Early on Jan. 11, the Auburn Police Department issued a warning that “freezing rain has made traveling dangerous this morning. Please stay off the roads until later in the day when the temperature rises and the freezing rain changes over to rain. Public Works trucks are out in full force, but are having difficulty keeping up with the freezing rain. Cars are sliding off the roads all throughout the city. Stay home this morning if possible.”


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