|Kentucky Transportation Cabinet snow plows like this one on Bellville Street in Marion have been out in force since midnight clearing roads for travelers.|
Greeted by heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KyTC) snow and ice crews began operations at midnight as waves of freezing rain, freezing drizzle and snow began sweeping across the region.
The icy precipitation created hazardous driving conditions for the public and for highway crews out treating the roadways. Overnight numerous snow plows were off the road due to the icy conditions. By mid-morning, most of the freezing precipitation changed into heavy blowing snow.
Highway crews in Kentucky’s westernmost counties of District 1 and District 2 made some good progress in their snow clearing efforts today. Much of the region received less ice that expected on the front end of the storm. However, snow accumulations ran above expectations ranging from about 3 to 6 inches. Wind gusts in the 25 to 25 mph range created near-blizzard conditions at times.
As we head into the nighttime hours, motorists are advised to continue avoiding unnecessary travel. Low temperatures in the low 20s will create the opportunity for re-freezing. With the continuation of high winds there is an ongoing opportunity for drifting snow. There have been several instances where highways have been plowed down to bare pavement only to have the wind blow snow back across the driving surface.
If you venture out tonight or on Saturday morning, please use appropriate caution. Simply slowing down can help improve safety for you and your family.
While Western Kentucky avoided some of the more disruptive aspects of this storm, as you travel eastward in Kentucky downed trees, power outages, stranded motorists and jackknifed tractor trailers are much more common. The impact of the winter storm is expected to continue through the weekend.
Again, the big concern for overnight hours is that slush and water from melting snow may refreeze as temperatures hover around the low-20s and that drifting snow will cover previously cleared pavement. Caution is required.
Some crews have managed to make some runs along “C” Snow Priority Routes. Most counties expect to be moving to “C” routes tonight or during the day Saturday.
Snow removal efforts are initially focused on “A” Snow Priority Routes which include interstates, parkways, and federal highways. Crews then move to”B” and “C” Snow Priority Routes which are mainly secondary and rural roads once “A” routes have been cleared.
To view the priority network for snow removal, visit KyTC online and select a county.
The cabinet also reminds motorists to follow these simple tips:
- Exercise greater caution when driving. Slow down.
- Be prepared for slick conditions.
- Give a wide berth to snow plows and other heavy highway equipment.
- Eliminate distractions while behind the wheel.
Timely traffic advisories for the 12 counties of KyTC Highway District 1, where Crittenden County is located, and District 2 are available on Facebook. You do not have to be a Facebook member to access this page.
Navigate traffic with KyTC and 511.ky.gov.