Snow, ice impacts felt in Chilton County this week

Published 2:14 pm Friday, January 19, 2024

By Carey Reeder | Managing Editor

Snow flurries, freezing rain and ice leveled Chilton County from Jan. 15-17 that made travel treacherous, temperatures dive into the single digits and schools and businesses close their doors.

The arctic blast weather front set in Monday night, Jan. 15, starting with a light rain that transitioned to freezing rain and some snow flurries as the temperatures plummeted. The temperatures the morning of Jan. 16 were well into the teens, and any surfaces with water, including roads, were completely iced over.

Most overpasses in the county were frozen over and virtually impassable, and large icy spots were reported on major roadways in the county such U.S. Highway 31 and AL Highways 145, 155 and 191 on Jan. 16, according to updates throughout the day from the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.

There were 24 road hazard or wreck alerts to the Chilton County Sheriff’s Office that were reported on the traffic reports on their app throughout the day on Jan. 16. Fifteen of those were on Interstate 65 with multiple wrecks being reported between MM 198 and MM 226, including a tractor-trailer that was across both lanes near MM 199 causing closures. ALEA announced later in the morning that I-65 was completely iced over and impassable in certain areas.

Those that were able to stay home during the cold days, such as Chilton County Schools students due the schools closing Jan. 16-17, took advantage of the snow day. Another blast of frigid air will set in during the evening hours of Jan. 19, and it will be well below freezing before the morning of Jan. 20. Temperatures on Jan. 20 will not creep too far above freezing and the cold air will stick around into Jan. 21 as well. However, there is no moisture coming with the front and there is no concern for ice. The roller coaster weather rolls on into next week as temperatures rise to as high as 70 degrees from Jan. 23-26.