Sleet, hail sends cars in a spin

One of the cars which ran off the road during a heavy downpour of rain and hail. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

One of the cars which ran off the road during a heavy downpour of rain and hail. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

Rattray Avenue in Wodonga was covered in hail, as was Melbourne Road. Inset picture: PETER MERKESTEYN

Rattray Avenue in Wodonga was covered in hail, as was Melbourne Road. Inset picture: PETER MERKESTEYN

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HEAVY hail sent three cars sliding off the Hume Freeway at Wodonga yesterday in what police said were “treacherous” driving conditions.

The downpour of hail lasted just minutes but was enough to cause mayhem on the roads.

Wodonga police were called to three separate incidents where cars slid off the freeway around 2.30pm.

Two of the vehicles became bogged and one had to be towed after hitting a guardrail.

Wodonga acting Sgt Tim Mooney described yesterday’s driving conditions as treacherous.

“When the hail hit it just covered the road in ice, rain and sleet,” he said.

“We had some drivers lose control and slid off the road.

“It was lucky no one was injured.”

The first incident involved a car heading south on the freeway that spun off the road, just after the High Street bridge, and slid into the rope barrier where it became bogged.

Two other cars involving male drivers lost control along the freeway, about 600 metres from the Melrose Drive overpass.

“One vehicle careered off the road and became bogged but was still driveable, while the other slammed into a guardrail and had to be towed,” Sgt Mooney said.

“Drivers need to slow down or pull over in these conditions.

“We found a lot of people had pulled over because it was just not safe to drive.”

Albury-Wodonga yesterday reached a top of just 8.7 degrees at 1.58pm and recorded just 2.2 millimetres of rain.

Cool temperatures brought snow once again at Stanley.

It is the third time snow has fallen there this year.

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