PELL CITY – Police Chief Paul Irwin Jr. said his department had not received any reports of weather-related accidents in the city.
“I think people heeded the warning and stayed off the roads,” Irwin said Wednesday.
The sun came out, and despite the temperature remaining in the low 20s, some ice along roadways began to melt.
However, Irwin warned commuters that as the sun goes back down and temperatures drop, ice can reform on the roadways, making for hazardous driving conditions.
“This is not as bad as what we expected at all,” Irwin said. “We are very fortunate.”
The snow showers were spotty, so some areas in and around Pell City received more than others.
“I was amazed when I got up this morning,” said Pell City Schools Superintendent Dr. Michael Barber. “We got about an inch-and-a-half of snow.”
Some areas, by contrast, just got a dusting.
Barber said school officials have traveled around the district, and some areas are worse than others.
“There are some areas where the sun doesn’t hit,” he said. “Some areas the roads are a solid sheet of ice.”
He said Gov. Kay Ivey had declared a state of emergency, so students will not have to make up a day of school because of the ice and snow.
“I can’t remember a time when all the public schools in the state were closed,” Barber said. “That just shows you the impact this storm had.
“At the very least, we will have a delay in the opening of schools (Thursday). I know one thing, we are ready for school. It’s been frustrating.”
Barber said the school system will notify parents Wednesday evening about school opening plans for Thursday.
Pell City Manager Brian Muenger said all city offices were closed Wednesday but should open back up at the normal time Thursday morning.
“We hope to have everyone back in on regular time tomorrow,” Muenger said Wednesday. “Roads look to be improving a lot despite the temperature.”
The Pell City Street Department, along with Alabama Department of Transportation employees, worked throughout the night to prevent road closures in the city.
“They did a great job treating the primary surface roads,” Muenger said. “There have been very few travel issues.”