A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Winter storm means warming centers, power outages, roadway clearing — and limited travel

Gov. Beshear, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) Secretary Jim Gray, and Kentucky Division of Emergency Management Director Michael Dossett updated Kentuckians on winter storm safety.

He said KYTC crews worked overnight and into the morning Thursday to maintain mobility along critical routes across the state following the third winter storm to strike the state in a week.

“Kentuckians have pulled together during these three winter storms. We have now restored power to more than half of the Kentucky customers who lost it – that’s substantial progress, but a lot more work needs to be done,” said Gov. Beshear. “We are a tough people, we’ve been through this before and we’re going to make it because we take care of one another.”

“The State Emergency Operations Center remains at a Level 3. There are 39 community warming centers now open, as well as seven shelters,” said Director Dossett. “We caught a glancing blow overnight with some additional snow and sleet, but better times are coming our way. Temperatures will be bitterly cold tonight and tomorrow but are warming for the weekend.”

“Precipitation has let up in most places, allowing our crews and contractors to make real progress on clearing roadways. In Eastern Kentucky, work continues to clear fallen trees and power lines,” said Secretary Gray. “We’re on the lookout for freezing drizzle today and overnight. That’s one of the most treacherous forms of winter weather. We urge the public to continue to limit travel and to be patient when they are on the roads.”

Electricity has been restored to approximately 85,000 customers after outages peaked at 154,000.

The state has received snow, sleet, freezing rain and cold rain through the system. Winter storm warnings and advisories are still current.

Even if roads appear clear, drivers should still use caution. Freezing drizzle and black ice post an invisible danger to drivers on the road.

To help Kentucky families impacted by the storm, Secretary Gray has extended his official order temporarily lifting some restrictions on commercial vehicles delivering aid to affected areas.

For snow and ice updates and resources, visit snowky.ky.gov. For updates on roadway conditions, visit goky.ky.gov.

If Kentuckians lose power, they should call their utility company.

Never use a generator inside your home or garage, even if doors and windows are open. Only use generators outside, more than 20 feet away from your home, doors and windows. Never use an outdoor grill, a gas stovetop or oven to heat your home.

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