The Herald Bulletin

December 20, 2012

Weather service warns about high winds

By Jack Molitor
The Herald Bulletin

ANDERSON, Ind. — A winter weather advisory has been extended for Madison County and will last until 10 a.m. Friday, according to the National Weather Service.

The advisory accompanied one of the first snowfalls of the season. At press deadline, one to three inches were expected overnight.

The advisory included a high-wind warning until 7 a.m. today, with gusts of up to 55 mph possible. Wind chill is expected to drop to single digits in some areas.

The effects of high winds and icy rain were felt Thursday as three utility poles were reported down throughout the county and a van collided with a car after spinning out of control in Pendleton.

Madison County Emergency Management Agency closed roads while utility workers replaced downed poles at the intersection of Indiana 13 and 38 near Lapel, the 8000 block of West 1050 South near Fortville, and 22nd Street near Raible Avenue in Anderson.

“The most important thing is for people to allow extra time and prepare for slick and hazardous road conditions,” said Todd Harmeson, EMA public information officer. “We always have a lot of accidents after the first significant weather system of the year because people are in too much of a hurry and forget over the season how to drive.”

The high winds and an overnight low of temperature of 25 degrees are expected to cause wet pavement to freeze. This presents danger for drivers, particularly high-profile trucks, according to the National Weather Service.

The forecast remains inclement for the next week. Temperatures are expected to be between the mid 30s and low 20s, and another winter storm is expected in the middle of next week.

Anderson Fire Department assistant battalion chief Kenny Williams said drivers should keep a safe distance and focus on arriving safely rather than quickly.

“This is the first real snowfall of the year, and roads are expected to get icy, so everyone should just try to be extra careful,” Williams said.

Anderson Street Department director Brad Land said the department is tuned in closely to the weather channel tracking the storm. To prepare, they have 2,500 tons of salt, trucks equipped with salt spreaders and plows.

Harmeson said EMA’s warning division is monitoring weather conditions giving updates to public safety entities throughout the day. He recommended residents have their vehicles fueled and have staples in their home like food and medicine.

Reporter Abbey Doyle contributed to this story.