Macon County braved some of the coldest temperatures of the season during the last couple of days, after a memorable winter snowstorm that began Sunday afternoon, December 12th, dumped between three to five inches of snow in Lafayette and surrounding areas.On Saturday night, December 11th, forecasters predicted a 100% chance of snow in Tennessee on Sunday, and the flakes began falling that afternoon, with the bulk of the snow coming down that night and into the early morning hours on Monday. Between three and five inches fell across Macon County and dipping temperatures turned the streets into a solid sheet of ice. The main roadways, as well as the secondary roads were treacherous and numerous non-injury accidents across the city and county kept the Lafayette Police Department, the Macon County Sheriffs Department and tow truck drivers busy throughout the evening and night.
It was the first major snow fall of the season, and it was hard for anyone to drive safely as the precipitation began building up on the roads, then packed down by the frigid temperatures. Motorists who tried to get home or go to the store began slipping off the roads and into ditches as the conditions only worsened, with the wind chill at 6 degrees and 15 to 20 mile an hour wind gusts.
“We had crews out at 7:00 a.m. Sunday morning putting down 30 tons of salt before the snow started,” said Regina Flippin of the Macon County Highway Department, “and they worked until 5:00 that evening. They were back at 4:00 a.m. on Monday with backhoes to take care of the three to six foot snow drifts that had accumulated on many of the secondary roads. The precipitation definitely reeked havoc on the roadways, and anytime they refreeze the conditions only worsen.”
Many area churches cancelled services on Sunday night, Air Evac & Life Flight were gounded and schools across Tennessee were closed on Monday and Tuesday. With the temperature hovering in the teens, the crews cleared the square and side streets on Monday, but complicating matters was the single digit temperature on Monday night, which refroze the wet roads.
Forecasters are predicting temperatures colder than normal again on Tuesday, and with another frigid blast possibly bringing more snow and sleet on Wednesday, December 15th, everybody bundle up and hunker down for some more bone chilling winter weather!