National Weather Service forecasters are predicting hazardous conditions will develop later today in southern Oklahoma.


National Weather Service forecasters are predicting hazardous conditions will develop later today in southern Oklahoma.

Rain is expected this morning but with temperatures falling during the day, ice may begin forming on elevated surfaces, trees and power lines. Freezing rain and sleet are predicted before midnight when the precipitation is expected to change over to snow. The winter storm will also produce strong winds with gusts as high as 30 mph. Accumulations of sleet and snow may reach 3 inches, forecasters said.

“Three quarters of an inch of ice and high winds are a killer for electric lines,” OG&E spokesman Gene Fryar said.

Fryar said OG&E employees will be in storm-preparedness mode and ready to go to any parts of the state that are experiencing power outages.

Oklahoma Department of Transportation crews were busy earlier in the week prepping salt and sand trucks and making any necessary tune-ups to vehicles. Crews will work in shifts and are monitoring weather forecasts. State officials are confident crews, trucks and supplies will be ready when the storm moves into the state.

“We’re ready,” ODOT road foreman Artie Hammon said on Tuesday. “All we need is a little action.”

Drivers are urged to allow extra space between vehicles, so there is adequate distance for braking in wet and icy conditions. They should stay at least 200 feet behind road-clearing equipment, since crews need room to maneuver and can engage plowing or spreading materials without notice. Ardmore Street Superintendent Don Olive said he expected his crews to be fully prepared for the storm by noon Wednesday. Because significant ice accumulation is possible today and tonight, city crews will be carrying chain saws in their vehicle so they can clear fallen tree limbs and other debris that might be blocking city streets.

Officials with the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management are working with numerous emergency response partners to take steps in advance of the approaching winter storm’s threatened power outages and travel problems. The agency will continue to receive updates from the National Weather Service and stands ready to assist the American Red Cross, Salvation Army and other disaster relief agencies in opening shelters and mass feeding sites, if necessary. 

The Oklahoma Blood Institute is asking that all healthy Oklahomans, ages 17 and older, give blood this morning as part of preparedness efforts for the forecasted storm.

Tips For Driving On Ice And Snow:

Check weather conditions in the areas you’ll be driving Clear off all windows Turn on your lights Buckle up Allow extra time to get there Remember that bridges and overpasses will ice up first Anticipate the flow of traffic to avoid sudden stops or quick lane changes Do not use cruise control when driving on any slippery surface If you start to skid, don’t panic, let up on the brake or accelerator and look and steer in the direction you want the front of your vehicle to go

Road Condition Information

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