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Governor urges Kentuckians to brace for winter weather

By Crystal Staley/Chuck Wolfe/Angie Van Berkel

Frankfort, KY - Gov. Andy Beshear is urging caution on the roadways across the commonwealth this weekend following the National Weather Service's prediction of snow for many regions of Kentucky overnight Saturday into Sunday.

Wet, heavy snow - possibly mixed with some sleet and freezing rain - will be possible all-day Sunday, creating an opportunity for power outages in the southern and eastern portions of the state. The Governor asked Kentuckians to visit to track hazardous road conditions across the commonwealth.

"Kentuckians should take time now to plan and prepare for the pending weather, so that we can keep as many people as possible off the roads overnight Saturday and Sunday," Gov. Beshear said. "If you must travel, please drive slowly."

Snow accumulations of 3 to 8 inches are expected in the eastern region of the state, south of the Bluegrass and Western Kentucky parkways. Areas between Christian County to the west and Laurel County to the east also can expect a glaze of ice. Snow accumulations of 1 to 6 inches are expected in Northern, Central and Western Kentucky.

Kentucky Emergency Management (KYEM) is monitoring the situation and will activate the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) if needed. The SEOC includes personnel from the Kentucky National Guard, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC), Kentucky State Police and the Kentucky Department of Public Health.

"Again, the commonwealth is on track for another major winter storm over the coming weekend, as this storm plays out in several waves," stated Michael Dossett, director of KYEM. "Please make use of this time to prepare for heavy snowfall that will severely impact travel, also bringing possible interruptions to power. Make every effort to stay off of interstates and highways and give way to the many emergency crews and responders that will be operating across our communities."

KYTC crews across the state have been readying equipment, stockpiling salt and ensuring plows and salt spreaders are in good, working order. Crews also have been pretreating roads in a few districts where conditions were dry enough. The treatment consists of applying a brine spray that helps reduce bonding of snow to pavement. The cabinet asked for cooperation and partnership of the public, with four specific requests:
  • Limit travel to what's necessary when snow and ice are on the roads;

  • Give snow plows and crew members plenty of room on the road;

  • Ensure personal vehicles are winter ready, with the recommendation of keeping an emergency kit in vehicles; and

  • Mask up to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help protect against the quarantine of plow crews essential to roadway treatment.

"Our snow and ice teams are working hard to be prepared to respond," KYTC Secretary Jim Gray said. "The best thing Kentuckians can do to help is to plan to stay off the road if at all possible."

This story was posted on 2022-01-15 10:15:34
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