Thursday, January 21, 2016

Traffic advisory issued ahead of storm

Special traffic advisory from the Kentucky Department of Transportation:

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Warning for western Kentucky and surrounding areas starting at 6 p.m. today with the potential for extremely hazardous driving conditions.

The forecast calls for freezing rain starting tonight changing to snow over all of western Kentucky by morning.  Snow accumulation numbers run in the 2 to 6 inch range with higher amounts from about Princeton eastward along the I-69 and Western Kentucky Parkway Corridor.  Winds will be increasing overnight with gust to 25-35 mph on Friday. That creates the possibility of drifting and blowing snow that can further deteriorate driving conditions

With the likelihood of ice followed by snow overnight, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and area emergency management agencies are asking everyone to think ahead and plan now for whatever arrives overnight.

Please avoid unnecessary travel.  Unnecessary travel might include a trip to the store for cigarettes, soft drinks, or a movie rental.

If you have a medical appointment or a dialysis treatment scheduled for Friday or Saturday, make arrangements to get treatment today. That will allow you to stay off the road until highway crews have time to treat, plow, and clear roadways.  Emergency agencies will be hard pressed to respond to true emergencies, so calls for non-emergency transportation may have to be turned down.

If you are required to be at work, take a sleeping bag and food to be prepared to spend the night.  If you have an extended commute to work consider staying with a friend or relative closer to your job site.  This will reduce the number of miles traveled on ice and snow covered roadways.  Some hospitals, nursing homes, and other critical services may require employees to stay on site to assure essential services.

Highway crews are prepared to work around the clock to do what they can to improve driving conditions. Our crews are geared up to plow and salt roads when we have snow.  However, when ice is included in the forecast ahead of the snow, that becomes a game changer and limits what can be done to keep traffic moving. Again, the National Weather Service is predicting extremely hazardous driving conditions.

Please carefully monitor area news media for updates on the forecast. We’re expecting additional information from the National Weather Service today, as the forecast firms up, and will issue additional traffic advisories as required.