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February 22, 2013

Winter weather leaves heavy snow in northwest Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY — Heavy snow created treacherous conditions for travelers in northwestern Oklahoma on Thursday, and conditions worsened as the day wore on.

The snow kept customers away from El Charro Restaurant in the northern Oklahoma town of Waynoka, where the National Weather Service said there was a foot of snow on the ground. But business started picking up once the snow ended Thursday afternoon, Carlos Delgado said.

“It’s bad, but it’s not that bad,” he said. But plows were compounding the problems from the heavy snowfall, pushing it off roads and highways into drifts that blocked access to private driveways and parking lots, Delgado said.

The National Weather Service lifted all winter warnings and advisories Thursday afternoon, said Daryl Williams, a forecaster with the agency in Norman.

Snow was heaviest in northwestern Oklahoma, where 13.5 inches fell west of Alva, nine inches in Freedom, about eight inches in Woodward and seven inches in Quinlan. Elsewhere, less than four inches of snow fell in Ponca City and about three inches fell in Ada.

Earlier Thursday, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation said frozen precipitation and near-freezing temperatures created slick and hazardous conditions on some highways in northern and western Oklahoma.

Christy Walker, a waitress at the Polly Anna Cafe in Woodward, got stuck on the snow-packed roads. But despite the conditions, Walker said business was brisk.

Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management spokeswoman Keli Cain said earlier in the day that the storm had caused sporadic power outages, with the largest being in the Bartlesville area in northeastern Oklahoma, where 430 electrical customers were without power.

“The big concern that we’ve had through this past event is just road conditions,” Cain said. She said her agency had received no requests for assistance from any of the state’s 77 counties.

 

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