Snowstorm slams Obion County; more in forecast
Posted: Tuesday, February 8, 2011 9:04 pm
By: Staff reports
Juleigh Cranford of Union City, daughter of Tracy Cranford of Union City and Bart Cranford of Troy, can’t wait for summer and apparently neither can her snowwoman, who donned a green bikini top Monday afternoon
From staff reports
Monday’s blizzard wreaked havoc on Obion County on many levels.
The snowstorm slammed into the county with a vengeance Monday and canceled some classes in the Obion County and Union City school systems. City officials across the county were forced to reschedule numerous meetings Monday night and local law enforcement and emergency agencies were busy throughout the day.
City meetings originally scheduled for Monday night in Samburg, Obion and Rives were all canceled and the Obion County School Board meeting Monday night was canceled, all due to the weather. Union City’s municipal court was also canceled Monday afternoon.
Classes in the Obion County School System were canceled entirely Monday morning before the snow reached northwest Tennessee, while Union City schools dismissed classes at 10:30 a.m. after heavy snowfall began.
Obion County Director of Schools David Huss said he began monitoring the approaching weather system at 4 a.m. and saw that it was strengthening as it reached Obion County, which prompted his decision to cancel school before the inclement weather hit the area.
Classes were called off again today in the county school system and Union City schools started one hour late.
The Obion County Sher-iff’s Department reported 20 vehicle crashes over the 12-hour period that began when snow started falling about 6 a.m. Monday. There were no crashes reported overnight in the county, according to a sheriff’s department spokesman.
Union City police dispatch reported five accidents occurred in the city during the snow event. Most of the accidents reported countywide involved only property damage and no injuries.
By early Monday afternoon, the snowfall ended and sunny skies appeared. Temperatures that dipped well below freezing overnight transformed the melted snow and slush into ice.
Officially, three inches of snow fell in Union City. Snowfall amounts varied across the county, but the one constant factor was treacherous driving conditions.
Monday’s snow forced Williams Sausage to send workers home Monday morning, while numerous other businesses in the area were also shut down by the snow.
Union City Public Works director Steve Ladd told The Messenger today he had his salt trucks on the road early Monday working on city streets and also had his department’s two trucks with grader blades attached working throughout the day Monday.
“All the main roads in the city are in good shape and most of the side roads are OK,” Ladd said. “There are some slick spots out there, though. Overall I think our guys did a really good job clearing the roads off like they did.”
He added he and others in his department would be out today monitoring the road conditions in the city. He said he is keeping an eye on the frigid temperatures today and another chance of snow forecast for Wednesday.
His counterpart in the county, Gary Lofton at the Obion County Highway Department, told The Messenger today his crews were out from 6:30 a.m. until 8:30 p.m. Monday clearing off roads. The highway department had 12 snow plows and three graders in action throughout the day Monday.
“We ran until it started freezing up on us,” Lofton told The Messenger early today. He estimated the county was hit with about five inches of snow and said the melting snow froze on roadways and created black ice.
Lofton said he will be monitoring the road conditions across the county throughout the day today and said he will have several of his trucks out working on the main and secondary roads in the county.
In western Kentucky, Fulton police cautioned against any travel during the heaviest snowfall and Fulton County, authorities diverted traffic from U.S. 51 just north of Fulton after several “slide-offs” just north of the Purchase Parkway along U.S. 51 near the Fulton-Hickman county line, according to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.
The crash of a tanker truck hauling hydrogen peroxide Monday morning in Carlisle County, Ky., blocked U.S. 51 about two miles north of Arlington, Ky., for several hours. Carlisle County Emergency Management initially reported about 20 gallons had leaked and an environmental recovery crew was on the scene by the afternoon. A haz-mat crew was able to help with offloading the chemical and a crane was used overnight to right the truck, with the highway reopened to traffic about midnight.
The Kentucky Transpor-tation Cabinet also reported a snow plow was off in the median on the Western Kentucky Parkway between Eddyville and Princeton near the six-mile marker and reported the Dorena (Mo.)-Hickman (Ky.) Ferry was closed. The ferry remained closed until mid-morning today to allow snow to be cleared from landing ramps.
Published in The Messenger 2.8.11