Highway crews battle new winter storm in western Kentucky
Motorists advised to avoid unnecessary travel in many counties
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2011) – Kentucky Transportation Cabinet highway crews today plowed and treated roadways throughout the Jackson Purchase and much of the Pennyrile region of western Kentucky as a new winter storm moved eastward.
State and local officials urged motorists to restrict travel in western Kentucky because of hazardous driving conditions – especially in Caldwell and Christian counties. Snowfall amounts exceeded forecasts, and plunging temperatures limited the effectiveness of salt treatments.
“Transportation Cabinet crews will do everything possible to keep roadways open,” Transportation Secretary Mike Hancock said. “But when conditions are hazardous, motorists should drive only when absolutely necessary.”
Charlie O'Neal, assistant director of operations for Kentucky Division of Emergency Management (KYEM), said his agency was in communication with local emergency management officials. If requested, “we are standing by to coordinate any assistance,” he said.
Statewide, Transportation Cabinet maintenance crews have a fleet of 1,065 snow plows and can call on more than 350 snow-removal contractors.
Motorists are advised to:
Exercise greater caution when driving. Slow down!
Give a wide berth to snow plows and other heavy highway equipment.
Eliminate distractions while behind the wheel.
Beware of ice as temperatures fall and roadways refreeze. A mechanical breakdown is especially dangerous in bitter cold.
Keep a blanket, flash light and emergency supply kit in your vehicle.
Stay in the vehicle if you become stranded. Help will come.
Road conditions throughout the state can be found on the Transportation Cabinet website at www.511.ky.gov, by calling 511 in Kentucky or 1-866-737-3767 for out-of-state callers. Links to weather updates, weather safety tips, including winter driving tips, can be found on the KYEM website at www.kyem.ky.gov .