Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

March 4, 2014

Crews work to remove ice, snow

By GINA KINSLOW
Glasgow Daily Times

GLASGOW — Efforts to clear roads of remaining snow and ice from Sunday night’s winter storm continued Tuesday by local and state highway crews.

The Glasgow Department of Public Works began the day by adding more salt to what had already been applied on Monday to the city’s streets, which did very little to melt the snow and ice due to below freezing temperatures.

“We are out salting and hoping this weather is going to warm up and we can start blading the roads after lunch,” said Kurt Frey, superintendent of the department of public works. “We should be able to get in good shape after today.”

Officials with the Glasgow, Barren County and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet highway departments reported salt supplies were diminishing due to the amount of winter weather that has been received.

“I’ve had salt ordered since back in January and they say they don’t have any to bring to us,” said Johnny Kinslow, road supervisor for the Barren County Road Department.

Frey has also had salt on order for about a month, but hasn’t received it.

Wes Watt, public information officer for KYTC, said the state highway department still has a satisfactory amount of salt.

“It is definitely dwindling. Right now we have adequate salt but it is something we are keeping a close watch on,” he said. “This is the first of March so hopefully, winter is almost over. If we continue to have winter weather, it will become a concern.”

The amount of snow and ice received kept law enforcement agencies busy on Monday investigating wrecks and helping motorists who slid off slick roads.

“As of about 7:45 this morning, from yesterday we worked a total of 17 [wrecks]. We haven’t worked any today so far,” said Trooper Jonathan Biven with the Kentucky State Police in Bowling Green. “For an eight-county post district, 17 is not bad, which tells me that people listened to the advice we gave and stayed home.”

As far as motorists assists, Biven estimated the KSP having at least 15 to 20.

“That’s people who ran off the road,” he said. “That’s probably a low estimate.”

The Barren County Sheriff’s Office investigated a handful of wrecks, but Mike Houchens, public information officer for the agency, said it was mostly people who ran off the road.

“We had a couple of big trucks and vehicles left on the side of the roadway. We checked on a lot of those,” he said. “We did work numerous accidents throughout the day.”

The sheriff’s office also conducted several welfare checks, but Houchens said deputies didn’t have as many as they thought they would.

“We didn’t respond to as many yesterday as we normally would when the weather is bad,” he said.

 Officers with the Glasgow Police Department also stayed busy investigating wrecks, but none had serious injuries, said Julianne Williams, public affairs officer for the police department.

“Most of the things we have dealt with has been pushing people out of ditches,” she said. “We have had several tractor-trailers to go off the side of roads.”

Donnelley Drive has proven to be a problem for tractor-trailers. One tractor-trailer belonging to Walbert Trucking of Glasgow, jackknifed on Monday and was not removed until shortly before noon Tuesday.

“They had quite a bit of trouble finding a wrecker to move it without it tipping,” Williams said.

Another tractor-trailer became stuck on Donnelley Drive when it slid off the road after its load shifted, she said.

Snow and ice during the first week of March is not atypical, according to Linda Gilbert, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Louisville.

“I believe Bowling Green did exceed their daily snowfall record for yesterday,” she said. “It’s not unheard of to get snow this time of year, but it did break a record of the maximum snow fall for the day.”  

The record snowfall for Bowling Green was 3.4 inches, breaking the record of 2 inches of snow the city received in 1943, Gilbert said.

Two years ago, tornadoes ripped through the area during the first week of March.

“We actually ended up getting snow a day or two later after that,” she said.

The five-day outlook forecast calls for temperatures to be in the mid-40s through Thursday and in the 50s for Friday. Temperatures are anticipated to rise even higher on Saturday, but there is a chance of rain for Saturday and Sunday, which could turn into snow depending on how low temperatures fall.

“Right now, we have a chance of rain or snow, but these chances are relatively small; just a 20 percent chance now, which is nothing major,” Gilbert said, adding the snow will more than likely be just “flakes falling from the sky” without any accumulation.   

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