Freezing rain presents problems in Howard County

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KOKOMO, Ind. (February 24, 2016) - In Howard County and Kokomo Wednesday, a lot of freezing rain mixed with snow made for slick road conditions.

For most of the day Wednesday in Howard County, it was a mix of freezing rain and snow. The concern from city officials was with that precipitation freezing over on city streets Wednesday night and making for hazardous driving conditions.

26 Kokomo City plows were patrolling streets and monitoring conditions Wednesday.

“If we can get them home safely tonight and the snow really hits, we can start plowing and go,” said Joe Ewing, Kokomo’s Director of Public Maintenance.

Ewing was concerned that freezing temperatures Wednesday night would change wet streets to icy ones.

“I think we’re going to get five inches in our area, that’s what we’re hoping we only get the five inches. We don’t want the stuff they’re going to get in Lafayette, that’s for sure,” he said.

School buses dropped off students after early dismissal Wednesday. All classes were canceled mid-day for county and city schools as a precaution.

“This is the first one that’s really got our attention up in this direction for a while,” said Kevin Johnston, Duke Energy Spokesperson.

Concerns in Howard County Wednesday surrounded the type of weather the area was seeing. Ice can be a power line’s worst enemy, weighing down branches and lines, taking out transformers and leaving entire city blocks, in the dark.

“When you get ice on our lines they start to bounce a little bit, they get ice on the trees and they’ll bring down limbs that are within reaching distance so that’s the big threat,” said Johnston.

Duke Energy is responsible for thousands of customers throughout the state. Johnston said they have hundreds of contractors on standby in case Wednesday’s storm produced thousands of outages.

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