Good Samaritans step up to help motorists during ice storm - Dallas News |

Good Samaritans step up to help motorists during ice storm

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TxDOT officials say that the effects left from the recent ice storm have been even more challenging than the winter storm during the week of the Super Bowl in February 2011.

With this year's storm, hundreds of vehicles wound up stranded or crashed, but some strangers came up with a very "Texas" way to rescue them – they used their pickup trucks.

With a bed full of tools, a Ford F-250, and a desire to help, Chance Craven hit the roads early Friday morning looking for cars and trucks in ditches.   

"You just pull over, ask if they need help and then hook up the tow road and pull them out," said Craven. "They say thank you, we shake their hand, move on to the next one."

Cell phone video captured Craven and several other folks with 4x4s who linked up, chain by chain, and pulled several semis out of the ice and mud.

"It was probably 40 or 50 motorists and 20 or 30 semis," said Craven.

It took hours, and when the trucks thinned out, they went looking for others.

Hunter Adams wasn't a driver – he was helping hook up chains to bumpers.

"We just kept pushing," said Adams. "We never gave up. Each one, we got faster and faster smarter and smarter, you know."

One thing the team of Good Samaritans did not see along 170 in north Fort Worth during their rescue effort was TxDOT officials, and that was the topic at Dallas County Commissioners weekly meeting.

County judge Clay Jenkins said TxDOT's response was not what it could have been in clearing roads of the traffic-stopping ice because the agency has suffered budget cuts by state lawmakers.

Jenkins says the NTTA did a better job along its tollway system because of greater resources and fewer miles of road to keep open, and the Good Samaritans did what they did for free.

"It just makes you feel good that you helped somebody, and I know later on down the road, they'll help somebody else," said Adams.

Jenkins says TxDOT needs billions of dollars just to keep up with pothole repair on the roads that exist now, and they don't have it.

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