National Weather Service

The layer of sleet, ice and snow that has covered Leflore County and made driving treacherous may be sticking around a while.

Logan Pool, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Jackson, said, since the start of the winter storm, Leflore County has seen 3 to 4 inches of mostly sleet.

A trend, he said, that may continue.

“In that area, we are expecting colder than normal temperatures beyond midweek,” Pool said. “Today, Leflore is in the lower 20s, but that drops down again Tuesday night into the mid-teens.”

Pool also said that the National Weather Service is monitoring the temperature for Wednesday. He said that the service is predicting 32 to 35 degrees.

“With Wednesday, it is important we watch the temperature because precipitation is expected to move in,” Pool said. “If Leflore County stays toward the lower end at 32 or freezing, you all could get some more frozen rain.”

National Weather Service

As of Tuesday morning, the National Weather Service is predicting a 90% chance of a mixture of rain, snow, freezing rain and sleet all day Wednesday into the night with wind gusts as high as 20 mph.

As Thursday moves in, the service shows a similar situation with another chance of mixed precipitation all day.

As for the roads, officials are urging citizens to try and stay home if possible.

The Greenwood Leflore Consolidated School District announced Tuesday that schools would remain closed Wednesday but that students, who have been taking classes remotely for the entire school year, were still to complete their work packets.

Mississippi Highway Patrol Sgt. Ronnie Shive said Tuesday morning that the roads have been “very quiet.”

A Facebook post from MHP showed that the area in which Leflore County falls under has had 28 weather-related incidents since Sunday. Shive said these are calls MHP responds to where there is no damage to vehicles, such as cars in the medians or off roadways.

He said that he only knew of one accident that occurred in the area: a car got stuck in a ditch Monday off U.S. 51 south of Goodman in Holmes County, with no injuries reported.

Likewise, Greenwood Police Chief Terrence Craft said in a text message that there are no accidents his department is aware of. The main issue has been vehicles getting stuck in the snow and needing assistance in being pulled out.

In Carroll County, the Board of Supervisors and the municipalities of Carrollton, North Carrollton and Vaiden filed an emergency proclamation based on the weather and sent a resolution to Gov. Tate Reeves requesting he declare a state emergency, according to a prepared statement released by Ken Strachan, director of Carroll County’s emergency management and mayor of North Carrollton.

On Sunday, when icy road conditions first developed, three vehicles went off I-55, just south of Vaiden, one of which was an entrapment, Strachan said, though no further information was provided to the county’s Emergency of Operations Center.

Early Monday morning, around 2 a.m., near the 170-mile marker south of Vaiden, an 18-wheeler truck jackknifed and blocked the southbound lane temporarily. There were no reported injuries, Strachan said.

On Tuesday, Greenwood City Hall was closed because of the inclement weather, and Mayor Carolyn McAdams said the city has halted its garbage and trash pickup for the time being until the streets are cleared.

When the weather lifts, McAdams said the city will resume garbage and trash pick up and added that the city would work through the weekend if the weather is clear.

The storm also proved too powerful for the U.S. Postal Service.

In a release sent Tuesday morning, the USPS said most of its offices throughout the state, including in the local region, would be temporarily suspending service on Tuesday due to the weather.

“We apologize for any inconvenience customers may experience, but safety of both customers and employees comes first,” the postal service said.

This is the second day in a row the mail service has not run, as Monday was an observance of the Presidents' Day holiday.

Meanwhile, many stores in the area have closed their doors because of the weather, and others have altered their hours.

Greenwood Market Place adjusted its hours and will close at 5 p.m. Tuesday, while Walmart on U.S. 82 said it has not been determined yet what time it would be closing.

All school campuses in the area were closed again Tuesday, including the Greenwood Leflore Consolidated School District as well as Pillow and Carroll academies. Pillow has announced it will remain closed at least through Thursday, and Carroll has announced it will remain closed Wednesday. 

Leflore Legacy Academy, a charter school in Greenwood, and the Carroll County School District will operate under distance learning through Thursday.

Mississippi Valley State University closed its campus Tuesday for everyone but essential personnel because of the weather. Donell Maxie, MVSU’s director of communications, said by text message that Valley is following updates from state agencies and will make further decisions regarding campus closure for the upcoming days based on those updates.

David O’Bryan, general manager of Delta Electric Power Association, said the number of outages in the utility company’s service area has “been very limited in number, and so we’ve been very fortunate to dodge any widespread outages with this weather system.”

At the height of the storm on Sunday night, O’Bryan said 100 people had power outages.

The main concern now is the prospect of snow and freezing rain Wednesday, O’Bryan said.

Contractors are still on hold to provide any assistance if required, he added.

• Contact Adam Bakst at 581-7233 or abakst@gwcommonwealth.com. On Twitter at @AdamBakst_GWCW. Or Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com

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