The image looked like a scene from a movie and captured international attention.
Lindsay Webb snapped the photo after it took her 3 hours to make a drive that usually takes about 3 minutes.
Webb says she left the Brier Creek shopping area in Raleigh around noon Wednesday, just as snow began to quickly fall.
Hundreds of others started heading home at the same time, causing major traffic delays.
The slick conditions quickly turned eastbound Glenwood Avenue into a parking lot as drivers struggled to make it up a steep hill.
Dozens of cars had already slid off the roadway when one vehicle got stuck in the middle of the road and burst into flames.
"Once we came over the hill, you could see ... most of the cars disabled or abandoned," Webb said. "That vehicle was trying to make it way up [the hill] when its tires spun, its hood started smoking, and it lit up."
She said before the fire occurred it looked like there was a way to navigate through the cars, but once she saw that, she knew it was going to be awhile.
"That's when I knew it was time to turn around," Webb said. "I just don't think anyone thought it was going to get that bad that fast. You get kind of panicked when you are in that situation."
Webb said she then turned around and found a point in the median where she could safely cross - but not before she snapped a picture of the scene.
She said she sent it to her friends and family, and the owner of the salon she works at posted it on their Facebook page.
Within a few short hours, the photo was gaining a lot of attention.
"I woke up this morning and this was on the news and we had interest from a reporter in Berlin," Webb said. "I was just happy to wake up and have power, but to wake up and have my picture on national news was really funny."
Webb said it took her 5 hours to finally get home Wednesday evening.