Recent ice storm impacts local businesses - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Recent ice storm impacts local businesses

Amarillo, TX - A weekend ice storm affected more than our roads, it impacted our economy.

Winter weather can negatively affect the wallets of many, but several local businesses saw a profit. 

Landscapers, body shops, and hotels are just a few places that saw an increase in traffic this weekend. Even restaurants like Pizza Hut said they had increased sales and deliveries because of wintry conditions. 

With over 200 accidents, body shops and towing companies such as Jimmy Fincher Body Shop and T Miller Wrecker are seeing increased business from the storm.

Jimmy Fincher's said business has picked up and several cars have come in from wrecks this weekend with damages varying from minor to severe. They said one of the more damaged vehicles they were working on was a truck with a caved in bed.

Safety Manager of T Miller Wrecker, David Ferril, said storms like this usually have a positive impact on their business. "It always helps the business to get storms come through cause we're so busy and things like that, so I mean we do as a business benefit from it as will body shops and other businesses that deal with this type of stuff." 

Ferril said they were called out to about 80 crashes, and worked nonstop from midnight on Friday until around three Sunday morning. T Miller was so busy they had a full staff working over 16 hours a day. 

However, not all businesses were positively impacted. Several retail stores like those at the Westgate Mall saw a decrease in traffic, even on Black Friday. Brian Giffin, General Manger at Westgate Mall, said they were busy on Thursday from 8 p.m. until midnight, but said business was slow on Friday from midnight until noon.

Many businesses would not have been opened if not for the clear roadways. TxDOT worked all weekend clearing roads to keep drivers as safe as possible.

TxDOT's Paul Braun said they wanted to keep as many roads clear for drivers and businesses as possible.

"Our main goals is to keep roadways open as best and as much as possible, especially I-40," Braun said. "I-40 is a major economic route for commercial traffic for this country and this area."

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