Winter Weather Makes Missouri Roads a Mess

December 22, 2004 – Posted at 5:29 p.m. CST

DUNKLIN COUNTY -- The winter storm that is sweeping Region 8 has left folks under ice and snow and even some with out power. In Missouri conditions are worse and aren't expected to get better anytime soon.

"It's going to get worse as the day goes long. It's freezing more every minute," said Jason Belcher of McMahon's Towing in Kennett.

Dunklin County is normally known for fields of white cotton, but right now, it's all white snow.

Dunklin County Emergency Management Director Shane Stoelting said, "We've had a large amount of traffic accidents, people off in the ditch. Right now, we are mainly trying to get help to these people as quick as we can. Get them out of the ditch and get them back going."

Drivers say the roads were especially slick Wednesday morning and some cars didn't quiet make it. And the problem is expected to only get worse.

Region 8 drivers were extra cautious, with more than six inches of snow in northern Dunklin County. But for some, it's been business as usual.

"We've had a few just stuck, but mostly there just sliding off in the ditch, loose control, we slide off," said Belcher as he worked on getting a car out of a ditch.

And if that's where you find yourself, try to find a cell phone to call for help and be sure to leave the heat running on your car. Temperatures this low can be dangerous.

Best the best tip to follow said Belcher, "Slow down. Just slow down and take your time. On ice, you can't control yourself on ice, when you loose it, you're in the ditch."

"Just stay home, do not get out unless it's absolutely necessary. If you are out of power and do have someone who is on life-support or on oxygen, contact the sheriff's department and we'll do our best to get generators there to assist those folks," said Stoelting.

Officials in Missouri say avoid driving and if you don't have to be out, it's best to stay indoors for right now.