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Snow hits county; no major problems

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By The Staff

    SHEPHERDSVILLE - Despite a snowfall ranging from three to six inches on Monday evening, few major disturbances were reported in Bullitt County.

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    Mike Phillips, director of emergency services, reported that dispatchers were fairly quiet even though it was one of the largest snowfalls in recent years.

    There were several accidents on Interstate 65; however, Phillips said, the state, county and city road crews did an excellent job on the roadways and most were in good condition as of Tuesday afternoon.

    In talking with county road foreman Jimmy Stivers, Phillips said the hope is that there would be enough to prevent refreezing on Tuesday evenings when temperatures were expected to drop.

    Bullitt County Public Schools, as well as private schools, were closed on Tuesday and Wednesday.

    The court system, as well as county government, was closed on Tuesday. The Bullitt County Public Health Department was also closed.

    The Fox Chase City Commission postponed its meeting to Monday, Feb. 22, at 7 p.m. at Becknell Hall.

    Phillips reported no power outages and said ambulance runs had not increased due to the snowfall.

    Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) and Bullitt County road crews worked through the night treating roads with salt and plowing to prepare for the morning commute.

    Though Interstate 65 and other major roads were passable, motorists should still reduce speeds and use caution, allowing for extra travel distance between vehicles.

    Bullitt County remained under a winter weather advisory throughout Wednesday afternoon with wind gusts up to 35 MPH and wind chills in the single digits. Gusty winds will cause blowing snow on roadways, primarily north-to-south roads.

    More snow showers were expected Wednesday, with less than an inch of additional snow accumulation predicted. Further snow systems may  move into the area over the weekend.

    KYTC offered tips for driving in snow and ice:

    - Make sure your vehicle is sufficiently winterized - check the battery, antifreeze level, heater, defroster, wipers and windshield washer.

    - Dress warmly - in layers of loose-fitting, lightweight clothing, in anticipation of unexpected emergencies.

    - Keep your gas tank at least two-thirds full to prevent fuel line freezing and prepare for possible lengthy delays on the roadway.

    - Make sure a friend or relative is aware of your travel route.

    - Carry a cell phone.

    - Keep an emergency care kit in your vehicle, with jumper cables, flares or reflectors, windsheid washer fluid, ice scraper, blankets, non-perishable food, first aid kit and traction material.

    - Check the forecast and call 5-1-1 or visit 511.ky.gov for the latest condition reports before traveling. Avoid any non-essential travel.

    - Drive carefully. Allow plenty of time to get to your destination. Do not use cruise control.

    - Bridges and ramps can be icy when other areas aren't.

    - Stopping in snow requires more braking distance than stopping on dry pavement. Make sure to leave plenty of space between yourself and the vehicle ahead.

    - Be visible, drive using low-beam headlights.

    - Steer into a skid, stay calm and ease your foot off the gas while carefully steering into the direction you want the front of your vehicle to go.

    KYTC descibes road conditions as follows:

    - Wet pavement - Ice could form as temperatures drop.

    - Partly covered - Marking may be obscured by snow, slush or ice.

    - Mostly covered by snow, slush or ice.

    - Completely covered by snow, slush or ice.

    - Impassible - Conditions unsuitable for all but emergency travel.

    Kentucky SAFE Patrol (Safety Assistance for Freeway Emergencies) drivers are equipped with blankets, shovels, reflective cones, auto fluids and other equipment to get motorists safely back on the road. Motorists can request SAFE patrol by calling 1-877-FOR-KYTC (1-877-367-5982).

    For further information on local weather and road conditions continue to check www.weather.gov, 511.ky.gov and www.pioneernews.net.