Winter storm snarls traffic

Traffic along U.S. Hwy. 51 was snarled due to ice and snow as a result of the first winter storm of the season.

Robert Long

The first winter storm of the season caused traffic tie-ups and the cancellations of school for public, private and parochial schools across DeSoto County and the Mid-South.

City halls across DeSoto County were closed due to the inclement weather, which included snow and ice on area roadways. Approximately one to two inches of the white stuff dusted roads and bridges.

"Due to unsafe road hazards and conditions, the City of Hernando offices will be closed until further notice," said Hernando Mayor Chip Johnson. "Emergency personnel will be working regular shifts to keep people safe."

Stranded motorists and people who need assistance should contact police emergency dispatch at 662-429-9096.

Garbage pickup in unincorporated areas of DeSoto County along with the county rubbish pit at Sandidge and Railroad Avenue were affected by the storm.

"Due to the snow and ice, there has been disruption to Friday's garbage routes," said Ray Laughter, Director of Environmental Services and Parks for DeSoto County. "We encourage all citizens who have Friday garbage service to leave their carts by the curb. Please don't move the cart until garbage has been picked up. They will be serviced over the weekend.

Traffic was slow going early Friday with several disabled vehicles near the rest area long Interstate 55.

The DeSoto County Sheriff's Department closed U.S. Hwy. 51 from Commerce Street to Pleasant Hill Road due to road conditions.

In Olive Branch, the city's new trash collector, Waste Connections of Tennessee, attempt to run its Friday route, but declared it too dangerous for the workers and other to keep trying to collect garbage.  Waste Connections plan to work over the weekend on Saturday and on Sunday to catch up. Residents were asked to keep their garbage cans on the roadside until such time as garbage has been collected.  

"Our streets are extremely dangerous and icy," Olive Branch Mayor Scott Phillips said Friday morning. "We have trucks out attempting to put sand and salt down where it's needed, but we advise not traveling unless needed. Our city offices and municipal court are closed today."

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