February 1, 2022 Winter Weather Event Situation Update 2
Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security
Situation Update 2
February 3, 2022 4:30 p.m.
WINTER STORM IMPACTING STATE
Due to hazardous winter weather conditions, the State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) activated Wednesday. The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (ODEMHS) is in contact with emergency managers across the state and coordinating with agencies and organizations including the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma Department of Transportation, Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Oklahoma National Guard, Oklahoma Corporation Commission, Oklahoma Insurance Department, Oklahoma Management and Enterprise Services, National Weather Service, Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, and others.
STATE OF EMERGENCY
Governor Kevin Stitt declared a State of Emergency for all 77 counties on Tuesday, February 2. The Executive Order temporarily suspends requirements for size and weights permits of oversized vehicles transporting materials and supplies used for emergency relief and power restoration.
SHELTERS AND WARMING STATIONS
Five shelters are open for overnight stays:
- C3 Church Shawnee, 329 N. Pesotum, Shawnee
- Disciples Christian Church, 5800 Douglas Ln, Bartlesville
- Get Real Ministries, 409 W. 13th St, Bartlesville
- The I Am Possible Shelter, 4310 W. University St, Durant
- All Saints Episcopal Church, 325 E. Washington Ave, McAlester
One warming station is open:
- Wellston FBC, 310 Birch St, Wellston
Additional shelters and warming stations are open for people experiencing homelessness.
The Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports 1,003 power outages statewide.
OG&E Total: 156
El Reno - 51
Southeastern Electric Cooperative, Inc.
Bryan - 403
CKenergy Electric Cooperative
Canadian - 342
Canadian Valley Electric Cooperative, Inc.
Pottawatomie - 102
According to the Oklahoma State Department of Health, 47 injuries have been reported by area hospitals since Wednesday.
- 2 cut or pierce
- 19 slip or fall
- 6 poisoning
- 9 struck by or against
- 9 transportation related
- 2 other
EXTREME COLD EXPOSURE SAFETY
With temperatures expected to remain below freezing, the Oklahoma State Department of Health offers the following tips for extreme cold exposure safety.
Prolonged exposure to the cold can cause frostbite, hypothermia, or in extreme cases, death. Infants and the elderly are most susceptible to extreme cold. Frostbite occurs when the skin becomes cold enough to actually freeze. A loss of feeling and a white or pale appearance in extremities, such as fingers, toes, ear lobes, or the nose are symptoms of frostbite. Hypothermia (low body temperature) can occur during longer periods of exposure when the body temperature drops below 95 F. A person will become disoriented, confused, and shiver uncontrollably, eventually leading to drowsiness and apparent exhaustion. In severe cases, death is possible. The following tips can help decrease the risk of cold exposure:
- Wear layered clothing outdoors for better protection from the cold. Wear a cap to prevent rapid heat loss from an uncovered head. Cover exposed skin to prevent frostbite.
- While indoors, try to keep at least one room heated to 70 F. This is especially important for the elderly and small children to prevent hypothermia.
- Sleep warm with extra blankets, a warm cap, socks and layered clothing.
- Avoid fatigue and exhaustion during cold weather. Overexertion, such as shoveling snow or pushing a car, can strain your heart.
- Carry extra clothing, blankets and high energy snacks, such as cereal or candy bars in your car for protection if car stalls. Keep the gas tank near full to prevent icing. Don't travel alone.
- Check daily on elderly friends, relatives and neighbors who live alone.
- The elderly and very young should stay indoors as much as possible. Offer to shop for elderly friends and relatives. Just like in the summer with heat, it takes some time to get acclimated to cold weather.
The state has activated the Stranded Motorist Assistance Response Teams (SMART) to assist stranded motorists if needed. These teams of Oklahoma Highway Patrol and Oklahoma National Guard personnel will be placed strategically throughout the interstate system Wednesday through Friday. This program is a joint effort between OHP, the Oklahoma National Guard, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation, the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority and the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.
State agencies have also prepositioned industrial-sized generators regionally across Oklahoma. The generators can be used for shelters, water systems, or other critical infrastructure. Please note these generators are NOT for residential use.
Oklahoma Highway Patrol (OHP) reports they have responded to 89 abandoned vehicles, 303 non-injury collisions, 49 injury collisions, and 331 motorist assists since Wednesday.
Highways, interstates and turnpikes remain slick and hazardous in most of the state, however Oklahoma Department of Transportation and Oklahoma Turnpike Authority crews have made good progress in some areas. Motorists should be aware of deteriorating conditions into the evening and overnight hours as another round of snow moves across the region.
Travel in most parts of Oklahoma is still strongly discouraged. Most counties remain affected by low temperatures and snow-packed highways. Crews continue road clearing operations; however, drivers must be prepared for slick and snow-packed routes.
Specific areas affected by crashes and/or weather as of 4 p.m. include:
- SH-152 is closed between SH-81 in Union City east to N. Clear Springs Rd. in Mustang due to snow drifts. SH-152 will remain closed for an undetermined amount of time.
- Southbound SH-375/Indian Nation Turnpike is narrowed to one lane on the shoulder 4 miles south of SH-43 (mm 38) near Daisy due to a winter weather-related crash. Southbound motorists should expect additional delays.
Highways in the Oklahoma City and Tulsa metro areas remain slick and hazardous. Drivers are strongly discouraged from traveling if at all possible, but if it that is unavoidable, they should allow plenty of time, take it very slow and use extra caution when traveling over bridges.
Motorists should closely follow the forecast and check current road conditions on the interactive travel map at www.okroads.org or through the free Drive Oklahoma mobile app.
REMEMBER during snowy and icy conditions, motorists are asked to:
- Stay about 200 feet behind road clearing equipment; crews need room to maneuver and can engage plowing or spreading materials without notice.
- Allow extra space between vehicles to provide adequate distance for braking.
- Be aware of "black ice," which looks wet on the roadway but is a thin layer of ice.
- Be patient, plan trips ahead and allow extra time in reaching destinations.
To check CURRENT ROAD CONDITIONS in Oklahoma, call ODOT's ROAD CONDITIONS HOTLINE at 844-465-4997 or go to www.okroads.org. For turnpike information, call the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority at 877-403-7623 or go to www.pikepass.com.
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 9-1-1 for emergencies.