Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management
Situation Update 4
February 26, 2013 – 1:30 p.m.
WINTER STORM IMPACTING STATE
Due to the latest winter storm to impact Oklahoma, the State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) remains activated. Agencies and organizations represented at the State EOC during activation have included the Oklahoma Military Department, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma Department of Transportation, Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Salvation Army, American Red Cross and other disaster relief agencies.
A State of Emergency remains in effect for 56 of 77 Oklahoma counties. The Executive Order allows state agencies to make emergency purchases related to disaster relief and preparedness. It is also a first step toward seeking federal assistance should it be necessary.
A winter storm impacted much of Oklahoma late Sunday through Tuesday. This storm brought severe thunderstorm, rain, snow, sleet, and even small hail with it. Along with the variety of precipitation types, strong winds occurred across much of the state Monday into early Tuesday.
The most significant impacts occurred in northwest Oklahoma where 8-12 inches of snow fell, with higher amounts in isolated areas. Some notable snow totals are: 17 inches at Alva, 16 inches southeast of Fort Supply, 15 inches at Woodward, and 14 inches in Taloga. Snow amounts in west-central, north-central and northeast Oklahoma ranged from 3 to 8 inches.
As this storm system brought winter weather to the state, it also brought another round of beneficial rainfall. The Oklahoma Mesonet reports widespread 1-2 inches water equivalent precipitation across much of the state. South-central and southeast sections received between a quarter and half-inches. For the past 30 days, all of Oklahoma has received rainfall, with 4-5 inches in eastern Oklahoma and 2-4 inches elsewhere.
ROAD CONDITIONS AND STRANDED MOTORISTS
Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma National Guard, Oklahoma Department of Transportation, and Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management have worked overnight and today to identify stranded motorists in northwest Oklahoma and deploy teams to assist.
The Oklahoma Department of Transportation reports many highway closures in northwestern Oklahoma Crews are working to plow and treat roads in Cimarron, Texas, Woods, Alfalfa and Major counties as well as in parts of western Oklahoma. Travel is strongly discouraged at this time.
The following highways are now closed as of this morning:
- Alfalfa and Garfield counties: SH-45 is closed between the Garfield county line and SH-8 in Alfalfa County.
- Alfalfa County: US-64 is closed in Alfalfa Co.
- Alfalfa County: SH-11 is closed in Alfalfa Co.
- Beaver County: All highways closed.
- Ellis County: All highways closed.
- Harper County: Northbound US-283 is closed between US-64 in Harper County and Englewood, Kansas.
- Harper County: All highways closed.
- Noble County: SH-15 is closed between US-77 and I-35 in Noble County.
- Texas County: US-412 east of Guymon in Texas County.
- Woodward County: All highways closed.
For information regarding Oklahoma road conditions, call (405) 425-2385 or go to www.dps.state.ok.us.
INJURIES AND FATALITIES
A Woodward man died due to a collapsed roof at a home.
According to the Oklahoma State Department of Health, 49 storm related injuries have been reported by area hospitals including 25 falls.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has responded to 95 non-injury collisions and 22 injury collisions due to the weather. They continue to urge motorists to avoid travel in the affected areas.
The Salvation Army reports they are prepared to assist with any necessary mass care or mass feeding operations. Additionally, all Salvation Army centers are ready to accommodate the increased number of clients expected to seek shelter.
The American Red Cross continues to preposition supplies throughout the state in order to open shelters as needed. Transportation to such facilities may present some challenges due to expected road conditions. The American Red Cross is encouraging the public to shelter in place if possible.
The following American Red Cross and American Red Cross supported shelters are open:
- Beaver - Beaver Church of Christ, 424 Avenue E
- Watonga - Watonga Shelter, 111 N. Weigle
- Enid - New Hope United Methodist Church, 614 N. Garland
- Hitchcock - Hitchcock Shelter, 100 E. Main
- Kaw City - Kaw City Community Center, 700 Morgan Square
- Ponca City - Ponca City Senior Center, 319 W. Grand Ave.
The Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports approximately 67,700 power outages related to the storm.
Oklahoma Electric Cooperative reports 25,769 outages including:
Cimarron Electric Cooperative, Kingfisher - 10,850
Kay Electric Cooperative, Blackwell - 3,478
Kiwash Electric Cooperative, Cordell - 4,650
OG&E reports approximately 33,000 outages including 1,664 in Crescent, 21,212 in Enid and 1,212 in Medford.
PSO reports 3,160 without power including 1,749 in the Elk City area.
Municipal electric utilities report 5,782 outages. Municipalities without service are
Fairview, Waynoka, Geary, Okeene, Watonga, and Goltry.
Numerous schools and businesses were closed yesterday and many have remained closed today due to the snow and dangerous road conditions in parts of the state. Road conditions have made it difficult to assist stranded motorists and restore power in northwest Oklahoma.
Garfield County/Enid Emergency Management reports up to 9-10 inches of snow has fallen and more than 20,000 homes or businesses remain without power. Overnight, law enforcement from Enid Police Department, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and rural fire performed search and rescue throughout the area. Many roads were closed due to downed power lines and snapped power poles.
Custer County Emergency Management reports they are using local companies with wrecker vehicles and heavy equipment to rescue stranded motorists.
For Oklahoma residents seeking non-emergency disaster or health and human service information, please contact your local 2-1-1. Services are available 24 hours a day by dialing 2-1-1 from your home or cellular telephone. Please only call 911 for emergencies.
Situation Updates are posted at www.oem.ok.gov
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Next Situation Update: As conditions warrant