UPDATE: Double Whammy of Ice, Flooding
The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency is working with state and local officials to monitor winter weather moving through the northern part of the state, and heavy rain through central and southern counties.
Gov. Phil Bryant issued a State of Emergency last night for all counties impacted by the freezing rain, flooding and severe weather. This State of Emergency is an administrative tool which allows state resources to be used to support counties and local governments prepare for and respond to this ongoing weather event.
“I have been in regular contact with Gov. Bryant since Sunday regarding this weather event,” said MEMA Director Robert Latham. “We’re prepared to respond and support any of our counties should they request state assistance. I appreciate him issuing the State of Emergency which will allow us to react quickly if our help is needed.”
The National Weather Service has issued the following advisories, watches and warnings which are subject to change due to developing weather conditions:
· Ice Storm Warning: Alcorn, Benton, Bolivar, Carroll, Coahoma, DeSoto, Grenada, Holmes, Humphreys, Issaquena, Lafayette, Leflore, Marshall, Montgomery, Panola, Quitman, Sharkey, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tate, Tippah, Tunica, Washington, Webster, Yalobusha and Yazoo counties.
· Flood Warning: Attala, Carroll, Clarke, Clay, George, Greene, Hancock, Hinds, Holmes, Jackson, Jones, Lawrence, Leake, Leflore, Lowndes, Madison, Monroe, Neshoba, Noxubee, Pearl River, Perry, Sharkey, Sunflower, Warren, Wayne and Yazoo counties.
· Dense Fog Advisory: Hancock, Harrison and Jackson Counties.
· Winter Weather Advisory: Calhoun, Chickasaw, Lee, Pontotoc, Prentiss, Tishomingo and Union counties.
· Flash Flood Watch: Attala, Choctaw, Claiborne, Clay, Copiah, Hinds, Jefferson, Kemper, Leake, Lowndes, Madison, Neshoba, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Rankin, Scott, Simpson, Warren and Winston counties.
Fifteen counties have reported the following winter weather conditions to the State Emergency Operations Center in Pearl:
· Alcorn: Bridges and overpasses have been treated.
· Attala: Minor flooding on roads.
· Carroll: Ice on trees and power lines.
· DeSoto: Ice on bridges and overpasses.
· Harrison: Cold weather shelter opening at D’Iberville Civic Center Complex, 10395 Auto Mall Parkway, D’Iberville. Shelter will be open Tuesday through Friday, 4:30 p.m. to 8 a.m.
· Lafayette: Ice reported in Oxford.
· Leflore: Few power outages, a few homes flooded.
· Lowndes: A few roads closed due to flooding.
· Marshall: Ice on bridges and overpasses. Several vehicle accidents.
· Panola: Ice on bridges and overpasses.
· Pontotoc: Ice on bridges.
· Prentiss: Ice on wooden bridges and secondary roads.
· Sunflower: Ice on bridges and overpasses. A few power outages.
· Tate: Ice on bridges and overpasses. Multiple vehicle accidents.
· Wayne: Possible tornado destroying two homes, two homes with major damage and two homes with minor damage.
Stay tuned to your local media outlets for updates on weather and schools in your area.
Due to the accumulation of ice in many portions of Northern Mississippi, the NWS has expanded the ice storm warning for much of North Mississippi until 6a.m. Wednesday. Motorists should expect icy conditions and remember to use extreme caution on roads and overpasses if they are traveling in areas experiencing winter weather, as slick or icy spots are developing.
Ice accumulation could also bring down trees and power lines. If you encounter any downed power lines, always treat them as if they are live, and report them to your power company or call 9-1-1.
Residents are also encouraged to check on elderly and at-risk neighbors and relatives due to the increased potential for power outages and temperatures dropping well below freezing. Make sure they have a safe, warm place to stay while the conditions remain cold and hazardous.
In addition to the threat of winter weather, heavy rain and thunderstorms are moving through the state causing local flooding of already swollen creeks and rivers. Residents should never drive through flooded roadways and look for an alternate route.