OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Freezing conditions and icy roads have caused accidents and road closures in the metro area and beyond.
An Oklahoma Highway Patrol official said as of 9 a.m. Saturday, troopers responded to 15 accidents overnight and into the early morning in Oklahoma County. She said some of those accidents resulted in injuries, but there were no major injuries.
The official said the accidents were spread out across the area, but many of them occurred on roads with heavier traffic, such as Interstate 40.
EMSA paramedics have responded to 16 motor vehicle crashes since midnight. Those crashes resulted in five instances of people being taken to a hospital. Paramedics have responded to seven slips and falls in the metro area since midnight; six of those victims were taken to local hospitals. Also, paramedics have taken one person to a hospital for hypothermia.
The notorious Belle Isle Bridge on Interstate 44 at Western rapidly turned slick Saturday morning as freezing drizzle fell in Oklahoma City.
News 4 Storm tracker Marc Dillard backed out of the mess as several trucks jackknifed in both west and eastbound lanes. The accidents briefly shutdown the highway.
Even wreckers had a hard time gaining traction on I-44 slick spots.
News 4 meteorologist Emily Sutton said the metro area lucked out compared to what Friday’s models for Saturday were showing.
A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect throughout Central Oklahoma until noon, and a Winter Storm Warning is in effect north of the Tulsa area area.
Freezing drizzle changed over to light snow and flurries in the Oklahoma City area, which is good news, News 4 Meteorologist Jon Slater said.
Roads become more slick and hazardous the further east one travels.
Dillard traveled Interstate 40 East and noted several accidents and cars that went off the road.
“One car was well off the road, I’m talking about 20 yards off the road from a spinout,” Dillard said. “The further east you go the more snow that has fallen. This is going to be snow-packed for quite some time.”
Slater said there's a snow presence further north and east, with heavier snow – about a half-inch to an inch of snow – in the Stillwater area.
Jared Avilez, a licensed drone pilot, provided the following photos of snowy Stillwater that he took with his drone:
Saturday will stay cold with a high of 37 degrees Fahrenheit, but the temperature will warm up considerably by Sunday with a high of 53 degrees and climb further to a 57 degree high Monday and a 58 degree high on Tuesday.