By Zach Osowski
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. —
Snow started falling around 7 p.m. Friday night in Anderson and precipitation continued to fall all day in the city, changing from snow to rain and then back to snow.
Despite the near-continuous snow and rain, there were not a lot of slide-offs and accidents reported compared to some of the other storms that have already hit this year.
James Janes, a dispatcher for the Anderson Police Department, said since 7 p.m. Friday night, officers had been called to a total of 16 accidents. All of them were property damage incidents with no injuries reported.
“That’s actually not bad, considering the conditions,” Janes said.
The same was true at the Madison County dispatch center, with only a couple of minor accidents reported Friday night.
“I think people are taking heed and making good judgments,” said dispatcher Shelia Love. “The roads are slick and hazardous and people need to take their time.”
Despite the dangerous conditions, Love said there were still a fair number of drivers out on the roads Saturday morning.
By 9:30 a.m., Steve Turner, a foreman for Anderson street department, said the main thoroughfares were about 75 to 80 percent clear.
“We try to get those first, like MLK and 56th Street,” Turner said. “We’ve been working on those all night.”
He said the side roads were slowly being worked on, but the majority of the manpower was being spent on keeping the most heavily trafficked roads clean.
Crews started working on the roads at around 7 p.m. Friday night and continued throughout Saturday. Turner said meteorologists were calling for the snow/rain mix to continue falling until 4:30 or 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon. Once it let up, plans were to continue adding salt and cleaning side roads to try and prevent freezing.
The hard work by the roads crews paid off for locals who wanted to spend the day shopping at Mounds Mall.
Melissa Detrick said she drove all the way from the Frankton area to do some shopping. She said the roads were clear and she didn’t have any problems getting to Anderson.
The same was true for Mike and Teresa Morgan, who came to the mall for their niece’s birthday party. They said they live on the east side of Anderson and had no problems getting around.
“We didn’t have any trouble getting out,” Mike Morgan said. “I spent about an hour shoveling the driveway but the roads were good.”
He said the side roads were still a little slick, but the main roads were in good shape.
The added element of rain could have an adverse effect on travel for this morning, with temperatures predicted to drop into the teens. Any water or slush left on the roads could freeze solid.
Joseph Nield, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said with the dropping temperatures the water could easily refreeze. He said that if road crews continued to be successful at keeping the roads clear, freezing should be kept to a minimum.
Nield added that the Madison County area got about five inches of snow and rain over the course of Saturday.
The National Weather Service is calling for a chance of flurries today with a high of only 17 degrees. There will be a slight wind, which could drop the wind chill into the negative digits during the day.
Nield said there is a chance of flurries for the next several days but doesn’t anticipate any type of accumulation.
Follow Zach Osowski on Twitter @Osowski_THB, or call 640-4847.