FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Springfield’s public service agencies held a press conference Thursday about the forecasted ice event for Thursday night into Saturday.
“Although we don’t expect this event to come near the severity of the 2007 event, our public service agencies are prepared to react if it does reach that level. We want to encourage citizens to take the opportunity to get prepared as well,” said Mayor Pro Tem Ken McClure.
McClure went on to say, “We are very blessed in this community to have this state-of-the-art facility and high-quality emergency preparedness staff to guide us through these types of events. We are also thankful for the great collaboration between our governmental entities - City, County and City Utilities, as well as municipalities around the region. We truly are a team working together.
Public Works has prepared all crews and equipment to deal with downed trees and debris including generators, chainsaws, aerial trucks and chipper trucks. Road crews are set to begin rotating shifts beginning this afternoon.
Because this event will most likely begin with rain, there will be a very short window to start getting effective pretreatment down on the roads once it begins to freeze. The fleet of 20-plus trucks will react as soon as we start to see the temperatures drop.
We know that roadways and especially bridges will be treacherous for at least part of the day tomorrow, so we advise that you avoid travel if at all possible.
Greene County and particularly its highway department will be working alongside Public Works.
Greene County’s road crews will be out clearing county roads to address any buildup of ice. Highway Department Director Rick Artman said he is encouraged by the higher temperatures forecasted over the weekend. That said, the region may experience flooding. Artman has brought in about 100 more barricades to use if road closures are needed. Citizens should take those precautions seriously. The County will update social media throughout the weekend to alert you to any road or bridge closings.
A few reminders:
• Report power outages to City Utilities by calling 1-888-863-9001.
• If you must drive, view these safety tips for driving on snow and ice from the Springfield Police Department.
• Stay away from any downed lines.
• Generators should only be used outdoors. Use only a heavy-duty extension cord according to the manufacturer's instructions. The Springfield Fire Department recommends at least one carbon monoxide alarm per level of the home.
• If alternative heating methods are used, remember to follow manufacturers’ guidelines and only use fuel appropriate for that heating method. Space heaters should be plugged directly into the wall and turned off when you leave the room.
The Office of Emergency Management will continue to monitor the situation. They have provided great emergency preparedness tips on social media and at their Web site on greenecountyoem.org.
Cora Scott, City of Springfield: 417-864-1009 or 417-380-3352
Erin Hedlun, OEM: 417-869-6040 or 417-860-0903
Joel Alexander, CU: 417-831-8902
Trysta Herzog, Greene County: 417-868-4140 or 417-771-9859.