From AP, staff reports
NASHVILLE — Most of Tennessee avoided a heavy impact from the winter snow storm that has blanketed much of the country’s midsection, but some parts of the state are still facing icy roads and heavy winds as the storm moves north.
Northern counties in West Tennessee got between an inch and three inches of snow starting late on Christmas Day and many parts of Middle Tennessee got a dusting of snow on Wednesday morning.
Obion County was in-cluded in a blizzard warning for extreme northwest Tennessee for Christmas night, but nothing that severe materialized locally and most areas of the county received about an inch or less of snow. Nonetheless, city and county road crews were loaded and ready to roll, just in case, and many local residents had stocked up on supplies.
With bitterly cold temperatures lingering, wintry weather is once again in the forecast for Obion County going into the weekend. There is a chance of rain and freezing rain Friday morning, followed by a chance of rain and snow in the evening and a slight chance of rain and snow after midnight. The Saturday morning forecast also includes a 20 percent chance of light snow in the morning.
Elsewhere in Tennessee, road crews with the Tennessee Department of Transportation were out early Wednesday morning to salt and plow bridges and overpasses, said Nichole Lawrence, a TDOT spokeswoman in Jackson. Temperatures were expected to stay in the 30s throughout the day, which could potentially cause more freezing roads.
“Once it gets dark, we expect refreezing to occur,” she said.
But no roads were closed and no major interstates were affected, said Lawrence.
In East Tennessee, the passing storm was expected to create potentially damaging high winds between 30 and 40 mph in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains on Wednesday. The National Weather Service issued a high wind warning Wednesday for the Cumberland Plateau and eastern foothills that could knock down trees or limbs or impair driving.
High winds knocked out power to about 7,000 customers in the Knoxville area on Tuesday evening, said Andrea May, spokeswoman for the Knoxville Utilities Board. She said power has been restored for most customers, but about 500 customers remained without power on Wednesday.
May said the high winds were persisting on Wednesday afternoon and the utility had extra crews ready in case more outages occur.
Published in The Messenger 12.27.12