Snowy, slippery conditions in southeast Nebraska to last into Tuesday night

FAIRBURY, NE –  A Winter Weather Advisory is now in effect for portions of southeast Nebraska until 3 a.m. Wednesday.

Areas of freezing drizzle Tuesday morning changed over to all snow around noon for most areas. Snowfall totals are expected to be in the 2-4 inch range in southeast Nebraska by the time the storm moves out.

The snow is expected to taper off sometime after midnight – likely around 3 a.m. Basically every area school was closed Tuesday due to the weather and slick road conditions.

Doane University, The University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Creighton University and Southeast Community College also called off classes Tuesday. The Crete Public Library and the Fillmore County Courthouse were among a few places that closed in the local area due to weather.

Jefferson Community Health and Life’s clinic in Plymouth was closed all day Tuesday due to weather.

Jefferson and Saline County Emergency Manager John McKee says conditions should slowly start improving after Tuesday.

“It’ll get better in the next day or two,” McKee said. “I don’t think the roads will be too bad (for ice). It’s going to be parking lots, sidewalks, side streets that are really going to be bad.”

Wind gusts as high as 35 miles an hour will create reduced visibility along with areas of blowing and drifting snow Tuesday night.

With the mixture of freezing drizzle, snow and wind, power outages will continue to be possible into Tuesday night. Norris Public Power District reported just one outage near the Saline and Lancaster County line early Tuesday afternoon.

Norris Public Power general manager Bruce Vitosh says crews remain on call if repairs are needed.

“The Norris crews are prepared to go out if we have outages,” Vitosh said. “They have all of their trucks supplied and ready to respond if an outage does happen.”

Customers can report an outage at NorrisPPD.com. Norris Public Power serves roughly 25,000 people in Jefferson, Gage, Thayer, Saline, Seward and Lancaster counties.

Statewide, traffic accidents due to weather were relatively low during the day. Cody Thomas of the Nebraska State Patrol says troopers responded to a little over 20 weather-related motor vehicle accidents before the afternoon commute. Thomas says having schools across the area closed today helped keep traffic off the roadways.

“We just want people to pay extra attention to the road,” Thomas said. “That involves limiting distractions, and not using cruise control. We talk about these tips all of the time during winter, so we hope by this time, late-January, those tips are engrained in people and we have a lot of safe driving going on.”

 Most roads in southeast Nebraska were either partially or completely covered in snow and ice by 5 p.m. Tuesday, according to the Nebraska Department of Roads travel conditions map. Remember you can dial 511 for the latest Nebraska road conditions.

You can follow Tommy on Twitter @Tommy_NCN.

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