North Winds, Ice Coated Trees and Power Lines May Increase Outages

Feb 4, 2014


Credit National Weather Service

Updated 4:40 p.m.

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet officials say workers have focused on clearing the remaining ice and slush off highways, but are now slowing their efforts.

KYTC spokesperson Keith Todd says today’s wind helped dry pavement and has reduced the chance of water freezing on roadways overnight. But some slick spots may remain in some areas and conditions are right for black ice.

Tonight’s temperatures could drop into the mid-teens, reducing the impact of the ice-fighting salt solution. Todd says while KYTC has enough salt for now, another series of severe winter weather events could strain supplies. The cabinet’s engineers are considering conserving salt in the near future.

1:00 p.m.

Ice coated trees and power lines are sagging and could snap as winds increase today. The national weather service reports up to half an inch of ice accumulation in some TN border counties.  Temperatures will remain below freezing for the coming days. Below is a list of resources for seeking information on power outages and road conditions throughout our listening area. 


10:36 a.m.

At this time, Land Between the Lakes has no electric, phone, or water services. All LBL offices and facilities are closed as a result. Once power is restored, staff will be able to assess any damages and begin clean-up.

Management is unsure of the timeframe, as temperatures are predicted to remain below freezing for several more days and wind may cause additional damage and unsafe conditions to exist.

Anyone traveling through LBL is advised to use extreme caution as roads remain heavily ice covered, and ice covered trees and limbs continue to fall throughout the area. If travel is not necessary, please stay off LBL roads.

Land Between the Lakes facilities and offices are closed today due to power, phone and water outages. LBL officials will assess the damage done due to the outages once temperatures rise.

Nearly 650 Kenergy Corporation customers are without power and the utility estimates power will be restored to all customers by 10 p.m.

Jackson Purchase Energy Corporation currently shows no outages, but about 1,500 people were without power overnight and this morning when a substation went out Husband Road. JPEC power was back on within an hour and a half.

KYTC Traffic Advisories:

5:34 a.m. The US 45 Ohio River Bridge between Paducah and Brookport is closed due to ice on the metal bridge deck. The bridge was closed about 11:00 p.m. and remains closed at this time. Traffic ADVISORY The US 45 Ohio River “Brookport” Bridge between Paducah, KY, and Brookport, IL, Also known as the Brookport Bridge and the Irvin S. Cobb Bridge, the US 45 Ohio River Bridge is at McCracken County mile point 12.882. The 10-span bridge carries approximately 5,000 vehicles across the river each day between Paducah, KY, and Brookport, IL.

13pm - The downed traffic signal in Marshall County at US 641 and KY 58 has been cleared from this intersection and the roadway has reopened to traffic. The intersection is currently a 4-way stop with temporary signs. The traffic signal will require a complete rebuild. 

9:09pm - Driving remains hazardous across the region as freezing rain continues.  We are advising everyone to avoid overnight travel, if possible. We are starting to get more reports of trees down in various counties including Hopkins, Webster, Chrisitian and Caldwell Counties due to accumulating ice, as well as some minor flooding. This issues are expected to continue through the night and into the morning commute.

8:00pm - Accumulating ice has taken down the traffic signal on the US 641 Spur at the intersection with KY 58 in Marshall County.  This is the signal just off the Purchase Parkway at Benton. The intersection is temporarily closed at this time. Estimated duration 1 hour. KYTC personnel are on site with police and other emergency agencies at this time attempting to safely dismantle the signal rigging to allow the roadway to reopen.

6:30pm - Calloway County is reporting a number of weather related issues. We have trees reported down across a large area of Calloway County.

Motorists should use appropriate caution across Calloway County.

Severe winter weather can also produce hazardous driving conditions on county backroads and major roadways. Listed are resources for road conditions in the Tri-State area. Road conditions and advisories may be posted on Twitter. 

Links to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet

Links to the Illinois Department of Transportation

Links to the Tennessee Department of Transportation


Companies in our listening area have designated hotlines and web resources for customers to report outages or seek information on effected power services. Advisories may also be posted on Twitter. 

Avoiding Frostbite and Hypothermia

Prolonged exposure to the elements may pose a chance of hypothermia and frostbite.  Frostbite appears commonly in the nose, cheeks, ears, fingers and toes and can occur on exposed flesh in as little as 10 to 15 minutes.  Protect frostbitten areas from further trauma by quickly immersing them in warm, not hot, water.  To avoid hypothermia, dress warm and avoid excessive physical exertion, smoking and drinking alcohol, which lessen the body’s ability to cope with cold.  

More tips for protecting yourself from the elements can be found here

Vehicle Winterizing 

Low temperatures and icy precipitation can wreck havoc on a car's electrical system if not winterized properly. Drivers should also be aware of road conditions and keep safety items in the cars at all times.

  • Test the battery. Flash the headlights when the engine is off, if the lights are brighter when the engine is on, the battery may be compromised and further tests are required. 
  •  Check the coolant levels. If the coolant and antifreeze isn't mixed correctly (50/50 solution is typical) the mixture could freeze and damage the radiator or engine. 
  •   Maximize vision while driving. Be sure to clear ice and snow off of the windows before driving and check that windshield wipers are working correctly. 
  • Equip your vehicle with an ice scraper, a well-stocked first aid kit, and jumper cables. Also be sure to pack a warm coat and blankets should your vehicle become stranded.

More tips for vehicle winterizing can be found here

Link to Red Cross Survival Kit Checklist