Emergency Management News

Friday, November 27, 2015

#AltusOK update #OKice Warning

As promised, http://mesonet.org/ is showing wind sensors on the State's Mesonet failing.  

Pretty much where the NWS is showing the most ice,

Inline image 1

one can see zero wind speed.  Yet, if you dare venture outside, the winds are obvious.

As I mentioned in yesterday's update, there may be "measles" on the map.  Today there they are.

From our friends at the National Weather Service Office in Norman:
The ice storm warning continues for Kay, Garfield, Kingfisher, Canadian, Caddo, Kiowa and Jackson Counties Oklahoma and all points west, as well as Hardeman and Foard Counties in Texas. A winter weather advisory continues for Noble, Payne, Logan, Oklahoma, Cleveland, McClain, Grady, Comanche, and Tillman Counties in Oklahoma, and Wilbarger, Baylor and Knox Counties in Texas. The main concern is freezing rain causing icing in the warning and advisory areas, although some sleet is also possible. Precipitation should primarily remain rain to the east of the advisory area.

The freezing line is roughly from Ponca City to Yukon to Anadarko, Hobart and Altus Oklahoma at 930 am. The precipitation is primarily freezing rain to the northwest of this line, and rain to the southeast. The freezing line will likely move only slowly southeast today, but may be enough for rain to change to freezing rain in portions of the advisory area, including western and perhaps central sections of the OKC metro as well as (potentially) Guthrie, Chickasha, Lawton, Altus and Vernon. Ice accumulation near this transition zone will primarily be on cold, exposed surfaces (car windows/doors, and perhaps bridges, trees, power lines, etc.) Farther northwest across northern and western Oklahoma where temperatures are colder, ice may also accumulate on road surfaces.
In the southeast, showers with heavy rain can produce some creek and river flooding.

The freezing line will actually move only slightly southeast. So some area just on the rain side of the transition may change to freezing rain this evening and overnight in the winter weather advisory area. In the advisory area, these impacts may not be through the entire county. Freezing rain and associated impacts may affect the western or northwestern portion of these counties while eastern portions may stay as a cold rain.

Moderate to locally heavy rain will continue across north Texas and southern and eastern Oklahoma.

Cold and rainy conditions are still expected over most of the area. Temperatures should warm a few degrees gradually changing the precipitation back to rain in more areas, although temperatures in northwest Oklahoma will still be cold enough to keep freezing rain and/or sleet all day (roughly Medford/ Cherokee/ Clinton/ Hollis and areas northwest.)

Locally heavy rain will still be possible in southeast Oklahoma.

Saturday night
Precipitation will continue through most of the area, although drier air will begin moving into northwest Oklahoma decreasing precipitation chances there. Temperatures will not change much, so the rain/freezing rain transition zone will just fluctuate somewhat through portions of northern and western Oklahoma. Precipitation amounts will be lighter though.

Rain/freezing rain chances continue to decrease.

Good luck to everyone out there and enjoy the rest of the holiday weekend.
Doug Speheger
National Weather Service
Weather Forecast Office Norman, OK
120 David L. Boren Blvd. Suite 2400
Norman, OK 73072

From Sid Sperry:

Freezing rain and ice accumulation has caused outages for a few electric cooperatives in Oklahoma overnight. The two electric cooperatives that appear to have the most outages due to ice accumulation at this time are Tri-County Electric Cooperative (TCEC, Hooker, OK) in the Oklahoma panhandle, reporting 3,867 outages as of 7:00 a.m., mostly in Texas County north and northwest of Guymon; and Cimarron Electric Cooperative, Kingfisher, OK, reporting 366 outages, mostly in the Hennessy, Kingfisher and Longdale areas. Northwestern Electric Cooperative in Woodward, OK, is reporting 15 outages, all in Woodward County, near the Sharon and Vici areas.

Total electric co-op outages as of 7:00 a.m. Friday morning: 4,251

Our friends at the Southern Region office wrote:

Today through Sunday

• A mix of wintry precipitation is expected to continue today across N NM, the TX/OK Panhandles and into W OK; will likely continue through  Sunday morning
• Freezing rain expected to develop further southward tonight/Saturday morning and possibly again Saturday night/Sunday morning into west/SW TX
     • Significant travel impacts from west of I-35 in OK into NM and spreading southward into the Permian Basin of TX by Saturday morning
     • Widespread power outages likely from western OK into the TX Rolling Plains and southern TX Panhandle
• Heavy rain over eastern OK, much of AR, N/NE-SW TX expected through Sunday morning with flash flooding
 possible over these areas  

The State Emergency Operations Center is at Level Three (Monitoring).  Those with WebEOC accounts may wish to participate.  

This is from Public Service of Oklahoma:
PSO Prepares for Potential Ice Storm in Lawton District

November 26, 2015 – 6 p.m.

Public Service Company of Oklahoma has begun preparations for responding to a potential ice storm in western Oklahoma, which could cause electric service disruptions.

Details of our storm response follow: 

The National Weather Service has issued an ice storm warning for many western counties in Oklahoma where there is a high probability of freezing rain and heavy ice accumulation on trees, power lines and utility poles. Locally, PSO expects the freezing rain to start in the western portions of our service territory around 7 a.m. tomorrow (Friday, November 27) and continue through mid-day on Saturday. Ice accumulations of ¼” to as much as ¾” are possible in the warned areas. Wind speeds forecast at 15 mph to 25 mph with gusts to 30 mph could also cause problems with ice-laden trees, power lines and poles.

PSO customers in the warned counties should prepare now for the possibility of power outages and are urged to take necessary steps to ensure their health and safety if the power does go out.

If outages occur, PSO will work efficiently as possible to restore power as soon as possible.

PSO has been monitoring the developing winter storm system for several days and securing additional crews and equipment to help with power restoration if that becomes necessary.

With the winter storm bearing down on western Oklahoma, PSO is assembling an initial storm-response force of 255 workers now, with at least another 200 workers due to arrive on Friday into Saturday.

· For safety’s sake, assume that any downed utility line is energized with deadly electric current. Stay away from the line and do not touch it with anything. Report it to PSO at 1-888-218-3919.
· In the event that major damage occurs, customers should prepare for the potential of a multi-day power outage and are urged to take necessary steps to ensure their health and safety while PSO works to restore power.
· Unless you have installed a transfer switch that isolates your home’s wiring from PSO’s electric system, do not connect a portable generator directly to a wall outlet or your electrical panel. This can cause electricity to back-feed into PSO’s electric system and pose a safety hazard for repair workers. Instead, plug your appliances directly into the generator.

· Please do not approach crews and utility vehicles you see in your neighborhood to ask when power will be restored. Doing so could jeopardize your safety. Outward vision from the large utility vehicles can be limited. A crew may not see someone who has walked up to their work truck.

Mr. Mowbray is duty officer in Altus.  He has already handled one resident's concern.  Please give him your full cooperation.

Use http://www.dps.state.ok.us/cgi-bin/weathermap.cgi and OK 888-425-2385 AR 800-245-1672 CO 303-639-1111 KS 866-511-5368 MO 800-222-6400 NM 800-432-4269 TX 800-452-9292 to plan your travel.  Do NOT call 911 to ask about slick roads, please.

Check http://www.srh.noaa.gov/oun/ and your favorite broadcast source for updates through the weekend.


IF you must travel, travel wisely.  Plan what you will do with one or two days without power.  Altus Power and Streets are working hard to minimize your inconvenience.  All essential services remain in place.

Be safe and observe the “National Day of Listening” http://bit.ly/1PfB9Eh

No comments: