McAlester Area Pounded By Second Round Of Winter Weather

Monday, February 23rd 2015, 2:02 pm
By: News On 6

Some of the heaviest snowfall has been in Pittsburg County. McAlester has already canceled school for Tuesday after a second round of winter weather.

Area roads are covered by thick ice that's topped with a layer of snow. Many roads going in and out of town - including the Indian Nations Turnpike - are down to one lane. Side streets are covered as well.

Plow crews have been inundated responding to the major transportation corridor. ODOT and turnpike plows are working around the clock to keep the roads clear down to McAlester while residents are also trying to dig their way out.

Clay Hanson knows he'll be clearing his driveway all day long.

"Layer after layer, ice after ice - I mean, a lot of it - probably more coming," he said.

When the latest round of snow started, roads were still covered with snow and ice from the weekend. Don Grigsby drove in the snow to see his mom in the hospital.

"All your businesses are shut down, mainly, other than the banks are open," he said. "Pretty much everything is shut down."

On Sunday night, trucks were out spreading sand and salt on Highway 69 due to icy conditions.

City crews are working with only three plows.

"After 30 years, I'm not too keen on it," said Tommy Hill, McAlester street foreman. Hill says his team is focusing on keeping major streets cleared until the winter system moves out.

"We started about 5 o'clock this morning, blade off the top," he said. "We will keep the citizens moving"

Many people are staying inside, but some that braved the snow took to McAlester's hills for some street sledding.

"It's safe, but it kind of gets a little dangerous when you get going fast," said sledder Max Harmon.

Tony Russell, reporter: "What's it like to have two days of school off?"

Max Harmon: "Awesome!"