• 77°

ALEA urges caution as Alabama prepares for winter weather

By J.R. TIDWELL / Editor

Residents in Chilton County may very well see snow falling on Tuesday, Jan. 29.

According to the National Weather Service, different parts of the county may see a tenth of an inch to 2 inches of snow.

“A strong cold front is expected to bring a transition from rain to snow overnight,” said the NWS in Birmingham on Monday, Jan. 28. “The transition could begin as early as midnight in the northwest and progress southeastward through the morning hours. Snow accumulations of one half inch to 3 inches are anticipated through Tuesday morning. Some isolated higher amounts are also possible. Impacts to travel appear likely near and north of a line from Demopolis to Pelham to Cedar Bluff by 6 a.m.”

The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency is encouraging motorists who must drive to use “extreme caution” and to expect roadways to be icy.

“ALEA offers the following traffic safety tips for those who must travel under potentially hazardous conditions:

  • Monitor local news for information on weather conditions and travel advisories, and check road conditions (available at alea.gov under “News & Alerts.”
  • Report traffic crashes or other emergencies by calling 911.
  • Remain alert for emergency vehicles, and remember to obey Alabama’s “move over” law, which includes emergency vehicles.
  • Keep vehicles in good operating condition. Check antifreeze levels and use windshield washer solution suitable for freezing weather conditions. Keep gas tanks at least half full.
  • Remember weather and roadway conditions may quickly change. Adapt speeds to existing roadway conditions, and be alert to changing weather and the possibility of icy, slippery roads.
  • Turn on headlights and windshield wipers, and maintain a safe distance between your vehicle and other vehicles during inclement weather.
  • Pay particular attention to bridges and overpasses, which have a tendency to develop hazardous “black ice.”
  • Keep blankets, first aid kit, charged cell phone and other emergency supplies in your vehicle.”

The Chilton County E-911 posted the following tips to it’s Facebook page:

“In preparation for the potential 1/29/19 snow event here are some housekeeping notes we’ve learned from previous events; please help us by sharing.
We have learned that our 911 system will be taxed with true emergencies during these events; people unable to get to critical health appointments, very sick people unable to get medical help, fires, etc. Our system must be available for those calls and not these below:
1: 911 doesn’t provide work excuses, don’t call and ask for one.
2: 911 doesn’t close roads; we provide information we’ve been given. Do not call 911 for current road conditions; monitor this page and other sources.
3: School closures are announced by the school district and we are notified the same time everyone else is.
4: We don’t know what time the snow will start and stop, we don’t know what time ice will melt; make those calls to Mother Nature.
5: We don’t know if you can drive to any other cities and how their road conditions are.

Take today and prepare, ensure your neighbors are prepared and enjoy your family time together and we will get through this event safely.”