Heavy sleet, along with freezing rain and snow led to dangerous road conditions in Prentiss County early this week and shuttered schools, government offices and businesses.
Prentiss County Emergency Management Director Bud Lindsey said a few minor wrecks had been reported but most people were heeding warnings and staying off the roadways.
“We haven’t had too many accidents,” he said.
Lindsey said he late Tuesday he was watching forecasts closely for Wednesday and Thursday and hoping the area would avoid another serious round of severe weather, particularly any possibility of freezing rain.
Sheriff Randy Tolar said they’ve had a few minor accidents but no serious injuries or damages from cars sliding off the roadways.
“The on duty deputies are being careful because the conditions are so bad on the county roads,” he said.
They’ve worked to make sure all dispatch personnel for the sheriff’s office and 911 and the jail staff were able to get to work.
A heating unit did fail at the jail and the sheriff said they’ve been able to shuffle inmates around the facility until the repair could be made.
Tolar said he’s grateful for the hard work of all county employees including the county supervisor crews who have been working so hard to keep things moving and safe during the severe weather.
Prentiss County officials closed the courthouse and all county offices Tuesday and Wednesday due to the weather conditions. A decision on reopening for Thursday will be made late Wednesday, said Prentiss County Chancery David “Bubba” Pounds. Booneville City Hall was also closed Tuesday and Wednesday with officials watching the weather closely to make a decision about later in the week.
The Baldwyn School District announced it planned to cancel classes and take a true snow day on Tuesday and Wednesday with no virtual work required for students. The Booneville and Prentiss County school districts were out on Monday due to the President’s Day holiday. Tuesday was a true snow day for both districts while students were out on Wednesday but required to take part in school work virtually.
Northeast Mississippi Community College also announced all campuses would be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday. Instruction moved to virtual for all classes on those days. School officials planned to announce a decision about Thursday classes on Wednesday.
Mayor Chris Lindley said the police, street department and gas and water departments had gone above and beyond in responding to the weather situation. He said all city workers had pulled together well through the week. Police were busy responding to accidents, helping essential workers such as healthcare providers get to work and otherwise assisting citizens.
Lindley said the street department was working to clear main roads and keep travel as safe as possible.
Gas and water crews were also busy. The mayor said there were several main water line breaks that had to be repaired. The gas crews also responded to several gas regulator issues at homes where freezing water got into the gas regulator devices. They were also out lighting pilot lights for customers.