A slow commute to the office this morning included some interesting sights:
- As a train cleared a crossing in Edmond, the gates — burdened by ice– rose very slowly to open the roadway. While southbound vehicles were able to cross the tracks within 30 seconds, the gate blocking northbound traffic continued to labor to lift itself upright.
- Edmond and north Oklahoma City residential streets, in addition to being solid sheets of ice, are an obstacle course as tree limbs fall or bow down into the road.
- Two men heavily bundled up were walking down my street. Both looked at me pulling out of my driveway and just shook their heads at my idiocy.
- It’s nice to park in a garage so one doesn’t have to scrape ice first thing. But it’s not so nice when you push the garage door opener and nothing happens because there’s no power. That’s when it’s handy to have a teen-age son who has nothing better to do (no school, of course) to manually close the door so one doesn’t have to exit one’s car in the rain to close the door.
Last night, about 8, the electricity at my house in northwest Oklahoma City turned off. No big deal, I thought. It’ll come back on in a few minutes.
I was wrong.
About 1 1/2 hours later, power was restored.
Good things don’t last forever. My electricity turned off again about 3 a.m. today. It’s been out since.
Luckily, my in-laws, who live in Bethany haven’t lost power — yet. That’s where I’m writing this blog from and will stay indefinitely.
The ice storm most of Oklahoma is experiencing today doesn’t seem to be as bad as the ice storm of January 2007. Still, more customers are without power now than 11 months ago.
I hope this isn’t a sign of things to come when the weather and conditions get really nasty.
The Broadway Extension generally was a passable road this morning, but caution is warranted at exit ramps leading to stoplights and streets. Also, take care in accelerating from a full stop. An SUV fish-tailed, almost ramming my much smaller vehicle at Broadway and Britton.
– Yvette Walker, Director of Presentation
I can hear the hum of the power lines and see the lights flicker. A line has come down in a neighbor’s yard, so I am wondering if I am about to join the about 270,000 other utility customers in Oklahoma that don’t have power right now.
According to emergency management officials, that’s how many are out right now.
The situation in Tulsa, says Andrea Chancellor, spokeswoman for PSO Oklahoma, is bad.
Power lines in particular are a problem. They are down across the community — in some cases, criss-crossing a single customer’s yard, she said.
Even my situation is hazardous. While there isn’t a line down in my yard right now, firefighters warned me away from getting close to trees that are under power lines that still are up. Those trees could be hot, they told me.
I went back inside.
More to come later … if I stay in power.
Jack Money, Business Writer, The Oklahoman
For once I listened. In late October I asked experts for suggestions about what to carry in my car for winter weather. Maybe I over did it, but if you looked in my car this morning, you would have found: de-icer, a short-handle shovel, bottled water, a blanket my wife put in before I left, cat litter and since I live more than 20 miles away I threw in an overnight bag with a change of clothes in case I need to stay in town or get sent out. Plus, I appreciate the thermos of coffee my wife made and I made sure my phone was charged up. I left home a little after 6:30 a.m. and it did take a little less than an hour, but thankfully it was uneventful. I may not need any of the above items, but I feel a little better “just in case.”
Have a safe day if you have to get out.
A user from Norman submitted this video of the effects of the ice storm. Check it out:
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