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* News Release *
Thursday, February 5, 1998 -- 9:00 a.m.
For Immediate Release

www.bceo.org For Updated Road Conditions

Butler County Engineer Dean C. Foster reports that conditions on Butler County roadways range from slushy to snow-covered. Snow changed to a mixture of sleet and freezing rain overnight. This mix has persisted into the morning rush hour creating icing and hazardous driving conditions. Motorists are urged to use extreme caution and allow plenty of extra driving time, especially if heading south into Cincinnati where near-blizzard conditions produced considerable blowing and drifting and snow accumulations have exceeded a foot. A LEVEL 1 Snow Emergency was declared in Butler County last night by the Sheriff's Office, while Level 2 and 3 emergencies have been declared in neighboring Hamilton County and Clermont County.

BCEO snow and ice control crews plowed and salted Butler County roadways non-stop throughout the night and are expected to continue all day today. Our drivers are reporting slushy roads in Union and Liberty Townships and wherever traffic volumes are high. However, roads in the more rural western and northern portions of the County are snow-covered. Some drifting has also been reported in the western townships. Our drivers have estimated snowfall amounts to be between two and five inches in the Oxford area to around eight inches in portions of Union and Ross Townships.

BCEO snow and ice control teams were first dispatched at 6:30 Wednesday morning as the storm began and have been treating all County-maintained roads continuously since then. Fourteen trucks are utilized to keep the County roadway system safe and passable.

While salt supplies are holding out for now, the BCEO snow-fighters are making special provisions should supplies begin to run low. Salt supply trucks have had difficulties getting out of Cincinnati and northern Kentucky where salt is unloaded from barges on the Ohio River. BCEO crews will utilize slag if necessary, though additional shipments of salt are expected to reach Butler County today.

Salt has been effective with this storm since temperatures have been relatively warm. But whenever snowfall intensifies and hourly accumulation rates increase, plowing becomes necessary. Calcium chloride is mixed with salt when temperatures drop below 20 degrees to help the salt maintain its effectiveness.

Motorists are encouraged to visit the BCEO's web site for continuously updated reports on County road conditions. The web address is www.bceo.org.

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