While it did not appear that this weekend's weather portended snowmageddon ll, local officials still wanted to pre-treat the Beltway to reduce car and truck collisions in case of a brush with winter weather. Ironically, the treatment caused multiple car crashes on the Beltway this morning as a contractor applied the wrong road treatment agent, thereby creating a slippery mess.

At least eight accidents are reported to have occurred on the stretch of the Beltway between Montgomery County and Prince Georges County. The contractor, at this point unidentified, used liquid magnesium combined with salt brine instead of merely salt brine.

In particular, the bridges on I-495 between Bethesda and Silver Spring were perilous.

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