Unsung heroes help free cars caught in winter weather

Winter storm coverage would not be complete without a look at the unsung heroes of the storm, those men and women stopping to help total strangers when their vehicles get caught in the snow.

The blizzard has come and gone, but Delmarva's roads are still a breeding ground for disabled vehicles.  First responders can only do so much, but that's where every day civilians step up and help those in need.

Local Ken Ferguson says he has helped a handful, including one man stuck in a snow drift at the entrance of a gas station.

Mark Nicolle, a contractor stationed in the Ocean Pines area, says he has helped over a half dozen since the snow began to fall, whether they be stranded in their vehicles or snowed into their home.

We ran into a a few folks helping dig out their neighbors vehicles in their driveway.

"Some of our neighbors needed some hands with the car that was stuck," says Salisbury resident Paul Downs.  "And then the car here has two wheel drive so it was having a little trouble, so we came down to help them get unstuck."

This after these neighbors had just helped Paul's family.  Showing what a community coming together can accomplish.

"They just had come back from helping me shovel out my driveway, so we're just friends, family helping out each other."

We then ran into three men, including Ferguson, helping a local stuck in a snow drift at a gas entrance.

"On my way to doing other things if someone's stuck of course you have to stop and give them a hand," says Ferguson when asked what compels him to help strangers in distress.

The folks we talked with had one similar message; you never know when you will need that same helping hand.

"Anytime you have some weather like it is now, there's always somebody that needs a hand, older folks, people or friends that you have that live near you that are willing to give you a hand, in turn they give you a hand.  You just never know when you need a hand," said Downs.  "It could always be you that's stuck.  So I think if you go along with that mindset that it could always be you on the side of the road, if you stop to offer a hand, sometimes you can give them a hand, sometimes you just can't get them out, but it's worth giving the offer."

"They would do it for me.  People around here are good hearted, strong people," says Ferguson.

If you find yourself stuck on the roadways there are some materials you can take with you on the ride that can help make a difference.

Rocking you car back and forth can help, but a shovel will work even better to remove the slush and ice around your tires that make them spin.

There are other things that can help add traction too.  Sand, kitty litter and cardboard are prime examples. but you can also use baking soda, instant coffee, sugar and Epsom Salt.

Officials are asking you to stay off the roadways if you do not need to be out.

Categories: Local News, Maryland

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