KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Before even getting onto the icy roads Friday, the first problem many East Tennesseans had to deal with was actually getting into their cars, which were covered with a thick layer of ice.
A handful of forward-thinking drivers in Knoxville avoided a bit of the dreaded ice by placing towels over their windshields or raising their wipers before the storm hit early Friday morning.
But for most people in Knox County, if they had places to go, they were forced to put their ice scrapers and defrosters into overdrive on their vehicles.
Breaking through sheets of ice took a lot of them quite a while to do before they could even think of going anywhere.
Whitney Mayes, of Knoxville, let her car warm up for 20 minutes. She spent most of that time using a handheld ice scraper, attacking the ice on her windshield.
"I'm freezing. My hands might as well be ice right now," said Mayes.
It was much the same for others around town. Karissa Dill, of Knoxville, said she was shocked by how thick the ice was on her car.
She knew it would take a while to get her doors to open and her windows clear, but she underestimated just how long it would actually take.
"I thought it would take five minutes to heat up, but it didn't. I thought the ice would melt with my defroster, but it didn't. It took 10 minutes and then the scraping of the ice," said Dill.
As other folks surveyed the frozen landscape of their windshields, they decided it wasn't worth the hassle, opting to stay home.
"Everything is just covered completely in ice. There's ice everywhere. All down the sides and down the backs. There's even ice down the wheels," said Chuck Hudson of Knoxville. "This is not worth getting out and getting hurt or hurting somebody else, so we're staying in."