The Norman Transcript

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February 4, 2014

Winter isn’t over for Oklahoma

(Continued)

NORMAN —

City crews are working12-hour shifts around the clock.

“The city is trying to conserve salt and sand,” O’Leary said. “We’re trying to conserve it for Friday if we get that weather.”

O’Leary said it’s hard to get more salt and sand during a winter event. Crews will be prepared in case Friday’s event turns out to be worse than the early forecasts indicate.

“We’re in good shape. Our equipment is in good shape,” O’Leary said. “We’re feeling pretty good about being able to manage all three of these snow storms.”

It isn’t uncommon for winter weather in Norman to change from one extreme to another. Brown said the Southern Plains, which includes Oklahoma, is characterized by wild fluctuations of warm, cold, dry and wet.

“When you hear meteorologists talk about average temperatures, it’s just an average of extremes,” Brown said. “So far, the first part of winter was colder than average for most of the state. We had pretty close to average, if not slightly above average in the amount of moisture we received.”

The December ice storm was followed by warm temperature spikes in January and dry weather.

“Overall, January was very mild and very dry,” Brown said. “Now we’re into an active pattern where we’re getting more moisture, and the first part of February is colder than average. It’s completely different weather than we saw through most of January.”

February is keeping road crews busy. County officials said they were busy sanding roads over the weekend and are prepared for another round of winter precipitation this week.

“Hopefully we will not have as much, but we will be ready,” Commission Chairman Rusty Sullivan said at Monday’s Board of Commissioners meeting.

Commissioner Darry Stacy encouraged residents to carry water and blankets while traveling in case they get stranded. He also encouraged travelers to let others know where they are headed and what route they will be taking.

Purcell, Noble and Little Axe school districts called off classes Monday.

Executive Editor Andy Rieger contributed to this article.

 

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