Jennifer Edwards Baker reports:
A bitterly cold and windy day lies ahead, with a wind chill advisory in effect until noon.
Most areas across Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky are covered by a solid inch or inch and a half of snow on the ground from a clipper system that hit Thursday night and turned roads treacherous.
Despite road crews working through the night salting and clearing main thoroughfares, many streets froze overnight as the mercury plummeted to 10 with a wind chill of -9.
Because of the cold and high winds gusting 20-30 mph, the National Weather Service has issued a wind chill advisory through noon.
The high temperature later will only creep to 12 with a wind chill of -5. That is well below the normal high of 49 degrees for this time of year, but a blast of Canadian air coupled with strong winds from the west will keep us in the deep freeze today.
- Cincinnati.com’s weather page with interactive radar, 7-day and hourly forecasts & more!
- National Weather Service: West Chester 7-day forecast
- AccuWeather.com: West Chester extended forecast
- Current power outages in Greater Cincinnati
Most schools across the area are operating on delays or closed.
Boone, Campbell, Kenton and Walton schools in Northern Kentucky shut down. Lakota, Kings Local and Mason schools in Ohio are delaying the start of classes by two hours, with no morning kindergarten in Lakota. Lebanon schools are closed.
Road crews are back out this morning, but icy conditions remain and blowing and drifting snow are a concern, the Ohio State Highway Patrol warns.
Interstates are fairly clear so far but cars have reportedly spun out on Interstate 275 in Milford and the Cross County Ronald Reagan Highway near the Galbratih Road exit.
Northbound 71 in Lebanon at Ohio 48 was shut down for four hours earlier this morning after a pickup truck hauling a trailer full of siding crashed on the icy highway about 4 a.m. One lane opened to traffic about 8 a.m.
“It’s like a skating rink out there,” said a dispatcher with the patrol’s Lebanon post.
Cincinnati police are warning motorists to aviod several areas in the city due to icy patches. That Central Parkway at Vine Street downtown and Dana Avenue from Victory Parkway to Reading Road over on the city’s east side, which police described as “a sheet of ice” at 8 a.m.
Southbound Freeman Avenue at 8th Street remains closed in Queensgate after a semi tractor-trailer jackknifed about 6:30 a.m. Police called for a salt truck and quickly enacted the city’s emergency reporting procedures for minor accidents. If no one is injured, simply exchange information and report your crash within 24 hours.
Crashes also were reported at Kellogg and Stanley avenues on the city’s east side.
“The roads weren’t doing too bad until they refroze overnight when it got down so low,” said Lee Lewis, one of Warren County’s road supervisors. “The wind caused a lot of drifting and blowing of the snow. When the sun comes up it should melt the ice and snow. It really heats up the blacktop and helps a lot.”
Metro buses are running across the region, but several are using detours including two routes in Clifton, a hilly neighborhood, an agency spokeswoman said.
Delays are likely. To check your route, go to www.go-metro.com, or call 513-632-7538.
Officials at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport say they are operating as usual at the airport. Travelers are advised to allow more time to get to the airport because of the slick roads.
Highway crews in Kentucky were called in Thursday night to treat the roads when the predicted flurries turned in to accumulating snow, said Nancy Wood, Transportation Cabinet spokeswoman. In the more southern counties of Grant and Pendleton, crews started had earlier because more snow was predicted there.
A jack-knifed tractor trailer closed southbound Interstate 75 in Grant County about 7 a.m., State Police dispatchers said. Because the accident was near the Corinth exit, drivers could exit the interstate, bypass the semi and get back on southbound I-75. Workers were trying to move the semi about 7:40 a.m.
An Ohio State Highway Patrol cruiser was struck by a pickup truck that slid out of control on icy I-75 at Tylersville Road in West Chester Township about 8:30 p.m. Thursday.
The trooper managed to jump out of the way and was not injured, according to the patrol’s Hamilton post.
She had stopped along the highway to help another driver who wrecked in the bad conditions.
More snow is coming later this weekend. Another 1-3 inches will fall Saturday morning, with the most snow expected north of the city.
Brenna Kelly contributed to this report.