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Archive for Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Winter storm warning, wind chill watch issued for Douglas County

Several surrounding counties also cautioned

Pedestrians downtown make their way through an expected snowfall that began around noon Wednesday.

Pedestrians downtown make their way through an expected snowfall that began around noon Wednesday.

January 6, 2010, 12:00 a.m. Updated January 6, 2010, 9:18 p.m.

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January 6-7 weather

Wind chills will range between -10 to -25°. Lows will drop to -8° leaving wind chills between -20 and -30°. Highs by Friday will remain in the single digits, with wind chills below zero.

City preparing ice skating rink

The Lawrence Fire Department assisted the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department in setting up an ice skating rink in Buford M. Watson Jr. Park Tuesday afternoon. Enlarge video

Send us your photos

Send us your winter weather photos, and we'll feature them online, in the Journal-World and on Sunflower Broadband's Channel 6 News. You can also e-mail them to editor@ljworld.com. Please include your name.

Kansas weather updates, via Twitter

9:14 p.m.

Wednesday's winter weather — high winds and periods of heavy snow — has made driving on area roads treacherous.

According to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, two injury accidents and 23 non-injury accidents occurred in Douglas County after noon Wednesday. Twenty-six vehicles slid off roads or stalled in the snow.

Jordan Seaburn, who drove Interstate 70 Wednesday afternoon from Kansas City to Lawrence, said traffic was moving about 45 miles per hour.

8:25 p.m.

Visibility in downtown Lawrence has declined to 3/4 of a mile with winds blow sustained at 15 mph.

About three inches of snow accumulation have been reported in Lawrence so far.

6:24 p.m.

Road conditions continue to deteriorate in Lawrence and Douglas County.

The Kansas Department of Transportation declares all roads in Douglas County as completely snowpacked. Local crews have done some plowing and will continue to treat roads through the night.

6News Chief Meteorologist Matt Elwell said snow will end before rush hour on Thursday, but roads could still be slick. Elwell said the biggest concern would be strong winds whipping up the snow and limiting visibility on the roads.

5:25 p.m.

Closings are coming in steadily, with Lawrence schools calling off classes for the first time this year. Other school districts that are closed for Thursday include: Bishop Seabury Academy, De Soto USD 232, Ottawa USD 290, Tonganoxie USD 464, Eudora USD 491, Lawrence USD 497, Corpus Christi Catholic School, Raintree Montessori School and Children's Learning Center.

You can see all of the weather-related closings on our closings page.

6News Chief Meteorologist Matt Elwell said Lawrence has had between 1 and 2 inches of snow accumulation so far Wednesday, with an additional 1 to 2 inches of snow likely before the snow storm moves out of the area late tonight.

4:28 p.m.

Lawrence snow crews have been treating roads with a mixture of sand and salt throughout the morning and are now focused on clearing the streets. Their top priority is arterial roads, followed by "collector roadways." The city advises that roads are still very slick and motorists should exercise extreme caution when driving in the snow by driving slowly.

After the snow has stopped falling Wednesday evening, crews will continue to clear priority routes and begin plowing operations in residential neighborhoods.

The city will have help clearing roadways in residential areas on Thursday morning. An outside contractor will bring in equipment to plow and remove snow from residential streets. The Utilities Department will assist the street maintenance division with plowing. The Parks and Recreation Department will focus on parks facilities and downtown Lawrence sidewalks.

3:59 p.m.

The National Weather Service has issued a Wind Chill Warning for Douglas County and surrounding areas, including Jefferson County, effective Thursday evening through Saturday morning. Snowfall is expected to end and be replaced by dangerously cold wind chills. The Winter Storm Warning remains in effect until 6 p.m. Thursday.

3:03 p.m.

Commuters on the roads from Topeka and Kansas City report slick conditions on the Kansas Turnpike.

One driver from Topeka reported seeing a tractor-trailer cross all three lanes of traffic on the Kansas Turnpike before landing in a ditch.

The latest information from the Kansas Turnpike now lists all roads in Douglas County except the Kansas Turnpike as completely snowpacked. The Turnpike is still listed as partly snowpacked.

2:27 p.m.

According to the Kansas Department of Transportation, roads in Douglas County are partly snowpacked.

The City of Lawrence has been treating streets since 4 a.m. with a sand-salt mixture, and will begin plowing operations once accumulation reaches three inches. Many roads in Lawrence have significant accumulations along shoulders and in turn lanes, but relatively clear pavement in driving lanes.

The city also asks all motorists to move parked vehicles off city streets, if at all possible, to ease plowing and road treatment work.

You can report weather conditions on roads you've travelled in the comments below.

Stay with LJWorld.com for the latest winter-weather information.

12:58 p.m.

As the snow continues to fall, roads in Lawrence have become slick and many are becoming snow-covered.

Even the normally heavy-travelled downtown streets were becoming partly snow-covered.

Slow down and give plows a wide berth.

12:24 p.m.

Snow moved into the area around noon on Wednesday.

Snow had been falling all around Lawrence for several hours before it began falling in Lawrence.

The National Weather Service is predicting 1-3 inches of snowfall in Lawrence today, and another 1-3 inches of snowfall in Lawrence tonight.

Stay with LJWorld.com for updated and the latest closing information.

11:35 a.m.

Snow has formed a ring around Lawrence, with Topeka, Kansas City and points south and north reporting snow falling across the area.

The heaviest snow is still expected in Lawrence after lunch.

The National Weather Service is projecting 2-6 inches of snow accumulation in Lawrence during the snow storm.

The snow is expected to end during the overnight hours Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

There are numerous cancellations already announced for Wednesday and Thursday.

5:22 a.m.

The winter storm warning issued by the National Weather Service goes into effect at 6 a.m. today. Snow estimates call for as much as five inches, with a range from two to five. Temperatures will be hanging around in the mid-teens, though winds will make it feel colder.

City crews began treating Lawrence roads at 4 a.m. this morning in preparation for the impending snowfall. Crews will be working 12-hour shifts in an effort to keep the roads treated and ready.

Should the snowfall accumulation reach three inches, the crews will begin plowing operations to clear the roadways.

9:47 p.m. Tuesday

The snow is coming, but exactly how much is still yet to be seen. 6News Meteorologist Matt Elwell estimated the area could get as much as five inches of snow Wednesday, slightly more than originally projected.

5:48 p.m. Tuesday

The City of Lawrence will begin round-the-clock operations at 4 a.m. Wednesday, the city announced Tuesday afternoon.

The city has spent the past 24 hours restocking supplies of salt and sand and is expecting another 1,000 tons of salt to be delivered on Wednesday.

The city will begin treating roads with salt and sand at 4 a.m., and then continuing treating until snow accumulation reaches 3 inches.

The city urges all residents to move cars off city streets and warns that as the storm progresses, some residential streets may become impassable. The city focuses first on arterial and collector streets before moving onto residential areas.

4:21 p.m. Tuesday

The area is in for another wave of snowfall beginning Wednesday morning, but the wind and conditions that will follow on Thursday might be worse, said 6News Meteorologist Matt Elwell.

“People are going to hate Thursday more than Wednesday,” said Elwell.

A Winter Storm Warning is in effect from 6 a.m. Wednesday until 6 p.m. Thursday for Douglas County and most of northeastern Kansas, with Elwell expecting 2 to 4 inches of snow in Lawrence. Elwell said snowfall will begin during the day on Wednesday and probably will wrap up by Wednesday evening.

But he said to expect strong winds, with gusts up to 40 mph on Thursday, which will cause wind-chill temperatures of 15 to 30 degrees below zero. Elwell said the wind could cause significant snow drifts, and he warned against “near whiteout conditions” on Thursday.

“It’s going to turn bad really quickly,” he said.

The extreme cold weather will continue Friday and Saturday, with lows below zero. There’s a bit of good news on Sunday, when highs are predicted in the low 20s.

— Shaun Hittle

2:45 p.m. Tuesday

The National Weather Service in Kansas City has expanded the Winter Storm Warning to include the Kansas City metro area, including Wyandotte, Leavenworth and Johnson counties.

2:31 p.m. Tuesday

The National Weather Service in Topeka has issued a Winter Storm Warning for Douglas County — as well as Jefferson County — beginning at 6 a.m. Wednesday and running through 6 p.m. Thursday.

A winter storm watch is in effect for Leavenworth, Wyandotte and Johnson counties, while a winter weather advisory covers Shawnee and Franklin counties.

According to the National Weather Service, Lawrence and Douglas County are in an area that can expect 4 to 5 inches of snow with locally higher amounts. Winds of 20 to 25 mph, with gusts to 35 mph, will lead to blowing snow Wednesday night and all day Thursday.

Wind chills between -15 and -25 degrees are expected Thursday morning, with -20 to -30 degree wind chills on Friday morning.

Stay with LJWorld.com for the latest winter weather information.

Comments

SeaFox 4 years, 11 months ago

So is the Winter Storm warning for today (Wednesday) or was it yesterday when this article was started (2:31pm Tuesday)?

Hint to LJW: Using relative terms to refer to time on an article that is repeatedly updated is a bad idea.

kernal 4 years, 11 months ago

SeaFox, the article at 2:31 Tuesday stated the warning would begin @ 6am today (Wednesday) and last until 6pm tomorrow (Thursday).

SeaFox 4 years, 11 months ago

I was reading the headline of the article, which said "Winter storm warning issued for Douglas County and surrounding areas today" at the time, and then featured an article that spanned two different days. You shouldn't have to read the article for clarification on such a simple point of the headline.

In a daily paper newspaper you don't have this issue since "today" is obviously the date of the newspaper.

fastwalker 4 years, 11 months ago

oh H! betta get prepped. but, wharza snow?

headdoctor 4 years, 11 months ago

fastwalker (Anonymous) says… oh H! betta get prepped. but, wharza snow?


It is those great computer models(They suck!) the weather service uses these days. Maybe they should go back to the old days and get some grease pencil in their blood. There has been some huge build up in the last couple of hours but the bulk of it at the moment in North of us and South of us. We could have some form right on top of us but other wise at the moment all we have is some real small stuff headed this way.

braverthanu 4 years, 11 months ago

Could someone explain why there is a Tongie split in our weather systems that come from the east. If you watch most storms wether it be snow or rain they always split before they get to lawrence. I know there are occasions in which that doesn't happen..but most of the time it does. Remember ....the Dec. snow storm came from the south and rotated toward the west ...so that doesn't count.

headdoctor 4 years, 11 months ago

braverthanu (Anonymous) says… Could someone explain why there is a Tongie split in our weather systems that come from the east. If you watch most storms wether it be snow or rain they always split before they get to lawrence. I know there are occasions in which that doesn't happen..but most of the time it does. Remember ….the Dec. snow storm came from the south and rotated toward the west …so that doesn't count.


Some may dispute this but was covered in this article.

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2005/jun/12/myths/?living

braverthanu 4 years, 11 months ago

If you look at the radar, it shows a definite split. You can even see a split forming in the second portion of the storm. I find it hard to call it a myth, when it constantly happens.

kusp8 4 years, 11 months ago

Glad I decided to come back to Larryville from Atlanta today. Ugh.

georgiahawk 4 years, 11 months ago

I am in Georgia, how much snow fall is still on the ground? What is the total that has fallen and stayed for yet another snow fall?

dncinnanc 4 years, 11 months ago

I just passed a semi that had slid up onto a curb on 6th st by Michigan... I tried to turn right a few blocks up, but my car said "nope, we're gonna keep going straight!" Be safe out there everyone, it's slicker than ___.

Kash_Encarri 4 years, 11 months ago

"12:58 p.m. As the snow continues to fall, roads in Lawrence have become slick and many are becoming snow-covered.

Even the normally heavy-travelled downtown streets were becoming partly snow-covered.

Slow down and give plows a wide berth."

We've reached three inches of snow already? Holy frozen tundra batman.

Jason Bailey 4 years, 11 months ago

The LJW staffer wrote: "Slow down and give plows a wide berth."

I am so glad you told me that! I was planning on hitting Mass. at 30 mph and crowding those large machines pushing snow.

Why can't you guys simply report instead of treating people like we're braindead? Oh, Oracle of wisdom and knowledge: should I stop for pedestrians or run them down? I'm not sure but know you have the answer.

PebblesFlintstone 4 years, 11 months ago

“12:58 p.m. As the snow continues to fall, roads in Lawrence have become slick and many are becoming snow-covered.

Even the normally heavy-travelled downtown streets were becoming partly snow-covered.

Slow down and give plows a wide berth.”

Especially the plow that just drove down New Hampshire Street with its blade up. SMH

50YearResident 4 years, 11 months ago

I am looking at the lead photo on this story and it looks like these people crossing the street are Jay-walking. Hey City Officials there is more money for the coffers. Jay-Walking must carry at least a $50 fine. Go get em!

Kelly Johnson 4 years, 11 months ago

Ok, here's my citizens report:

Monterey Way between 6th & Bob Billings is snowpacked. There's a car off the road at the South end of Dad Perry park - it was unattended so not sure what the deal is.

Bob Billings from Monterey Way to Inverness is becoming snowpacked but still had a little pavement showing.

Inverness from Bob Billings to 27th is snowpacked, & the light at Clinton Pkwy was not working right. The turn light would come on but then it wouldn't cycle to green for going straight.

This info applies to both directions of traffic as of about 2:45 pm.

beawolf 4 years, 11 months ago

I did notice a few flakes in the air. Some on the ground. I would advise all Lawrence residents to stay home for 3 days.

What a bunch of wimps.

PebblesFlintstone 4 years, 11 months ago

I just drove from the 9th & New Hampshire garage to North Michigan . Kentucky Street was very slushy, 6th was just starting to get slick, but the only real trouble zone was North Michigan from 2nd to just before Veritas.

maf3789 4 years, 11 months ago

so anyone think usd497 can save money and keep kids home and dry tomorrow?

ashmole 4 years, 11 months ago

Why does the city clear downtown sidewalks? Is it paid by property owners or Downtown Lawrence Inc to do this?

Boeing 4 years, 11 months ago

Maybe they are making up for all the city streets they don't clean?

maf3789 4 years, 11 months ago

schools are closed for tomorrow just announced on my alert

ccp 4 years, 11 months ago

Am I the only one who hates this format for weather stories. Please don't tell us what HAS happened. We want/need to know what WILL happen. How about making the forecast the meat of the story?

Jonathan Kealing 4 years, 11 months ago

Ccp--

We have forecast information all the time at LJWorld.com/weather. This is designed to give people the latest information on weather, road conditions, accidents and forecasts as well.

Also, yes, Lawrence schools are closed tomorrow.

Jonathan Kealing Online editor

ccp 4 years, 11 months ago

Thanks for the quick response, Jonathan. I still would prefer to see the immediate forecast at the top of the "alert" story, even if it's just a couple of lines. But I understand what you are saying.

Liberty275 4 years, 11 months ago

Citizens report! Citizens report!

As was to be expected. the Cherokee didn't miss a beat coming home from work even coming up the hill that always defeats the FWD econboxes. Why everyone doesn't have a 4WD or AWD is a mystery to me.

bearded_gnome 4 years, 11 months ago

Jackknifed semi on New Hampshire downtown if I caught it right.

God bless and protect our LPD, LDCFM [fire/medical], medical and street workers who have to be out in this.

grammaddy 4 years, 11 months ago

The next chapter in the story of the 2009-10 Snownami!

Rae Hudspeth 4 years, 11 months ago

Let's hope that the employers of Lawrence who dock the workers for attendance will have a heart and let the poor folks with kiddies out of school stay home with them.

Is there anyone's job, short of emergency and hospital personnel, that is so damned important that it can't take a day or two, or even an afternoon off in the name of safety? the less of us who are out there, the quicker the streets can be cleared.

notajayhawk 4 years, 11 months ago

Liberty275 (Anonymous) says…

"Why everyone doesn't have a 4WD or AWD is a mystery to me."

Maybe because they're unnecessary in a part of the country that resembles a billiard table?

Drove home from the other side of KC a couple of hours ago. The snow was starting to drift in the roads as the traffic dies down and the wind picks up. And I lost count of how many 4WD morons I passed with my FWD minivan.

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