Troopers tow cars parked along Petersville Road

Posted: Tuesday, November 21, 2000

TRAPPER CREEK (AP) -- Alaska State Troopers towed several vehicles over the weekend after winter recreation enthusiasts left their vehicles parked along the narrow, winding Petersville Road.

''I don't know what they were thinking,'' trooper Sgt. Dallas Massey said. ''It was a really hazardous situation. You basically came around this curve, and there they were.''

Several vehicles had to be moved and seven -- all from Anchorage -- were impounded, Massey said. At least one vehicle jackknifed trying to avoid the vehicles, he said, and an ambulance trying to reach an injured snowmachiner was delayed.

More vehicles might have been towed, but their owners returned before troopers hooked them up, Massey said.

Troopers responded to the area near Mile 6 of the road after a resident complained that a vehicle was blocking his driveway and the driver refused to move it, Massey said.

The Petersville Road is popular among snowmachiners and is also used by mushers and cross-country skiers. That popularity has caused conflicts with residents, who complain about traffic and trespassing.

''It's a seasonal thing,'' Massey said. ''It's things like 'Somebody took a snowmachine and drove it through my yard. They drove it over my shrubs.'''

There are also complaints of snowmachines speeding on the road, he said.

This year, the area is particularly popular because it's one of the few places with snow.

There's no safe place to park along the road, but there are two parking areas, one near Mile 14 at Kroto Creek and a private pay lot just past Mile 6 at Moose Creek, he said.

One man told Massey the parking lots were full.

Massey didn't have much sympathy.

''The parking lot is full, so you're supposed to park in the middle of the road?'' he said. ''I don't understand the logic.''

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