UPDATE: Dangerous Driving Conditions In Much Of Kansas

By: KAKE News / Associated Press Email
By: KAKE News / Associated Press Email

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The Kansas Highway Patrol is reporting that multiple accidents occurred on state highways in several counties as a winter storm moved into the state.

The Kansas Highway Patrol said I-70 would be closed from Hays to Salina at 11:30 a.m.

The patrol reported two accidents involving possible injuries Wednesday night on Interstate 135 in Wichita. Both involved drivers who lost control of their vehicles and hit barriers.

The patrol also reported an accident Wednesday afternoon on Kansas Highway 383 in Phillips County in northwest Kansas in which a driver lost control of a vehicle because of icy conditions, slid into a ditch and struck a tree.

And the patrol said another accident occurred Wednesday evening in Ford County, when the driver of a sport-utility vehicle traveling north on U.S. 83 lost control on ice and struck an oncoming pickup.

UPDATE: 9:15 a.m.

Reno County Sheriff Randy Henderson says several vehicles have slid off the roads and that owners are trying to find help to pull them out. He says problems with limited visibility can cause a hazardous condition if you're blocking the road, and recommends removing the vehicles when the weather clears.

Thursday, February 20, 2013

Road conditions in Kansas are going from bad to worse.

At 4:30 a.m., the Kansas Turnpike Authority reported zero visibility from the Oklahoma border to Wichita. Streets and highways in the Wichita area are snowpacked.

Reno County reported whiteout conditions around Hutchinson. One Sheriff's Captain said it took 45 minutes to travel 2 1/2 miles.

The Kansas Department of Transportation's website shows major roads in most of the state snowpacked and icy, including Interstate 70. The exception is in northeast Kansas but the snow is expected to move into that region,

Tom Hein of the Kansas Department of Transportation said crews have not been able to keep up with the snowfall Thursday morning. KDOT crews are working twelve hour shifts to clear the highways.

As snow continues to fall Wednesday, KDOT crews are working around the clock.

All day long Wednesday, the snow fell. It piled up on streets and highways causing problems for people who had to be out on the roads.

“In the morning it was pretty terrible took me an hour to get to school. I was averaging probably averaging 10 miles per hour,” Waseem Zayed said.

"While I was going home it was terrible, we had to take a bunch of different routes on the buses we were probably about 30 minutes late,” Hadi Zayed said.

KDOT crews will be working around the clock as snow continues to come down in Wichita Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

“12 hours shifts when we have a storm like this,” Tom Hein with the Kansas Department of Transportation said.

KDOT says anyone who can, should stay home and off the roads. But Tom Hein says they know most people don't get snow days from work, so he says just slow down and be careful.

"Be ready for those slick spots and our crews don't know and they'll try to do the best they can but during a storm like this it's impossible to have it perfect all the time,” Hein said.

For the latest road conditions go to KanDrive.org

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