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KC officials expect trouble clearing roads of ice and snow in this weekend’s storm

Kansas City plans for another snow storm ahead of Chiefs playoff game

Kansas City officials described Thursday how the city is preparing for this weekend's snow. A storm Friday is expected to make road conditions slick and power outages are possible.
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Kansas City officials described Thursday how the city is preparing for this weekend's snow. A storm Friday is expected to make road conditions slick and power outages are possible.

The snow storm expected to blanket the Kansas City region for a second consecutive weekend will come with ice and heavy winds.

If that is the case, Kansas City road crews may have a hard time clearing streets all the way, city officials said Thursday.

“You are going to get snow and ice bonding to the pavement,” said Greg Bolon, an assistant Kansas City public works director. “All we are going to be able to do is remove what is on the top.

“So you wouldn’t see bare pavement as quickly as you did on the last event.”

Last weekend, temperatures barely dipped below freezing. That helped crews remove the heavy, wet snow that hit the region and caused massive power outages and other problems.

This weekend’s storm may present different problems, and comes ahead of the Kansas City Chiefs’ much-anticipated appearance in the AFC Championship Game against the New England Patriots at Arrowhead Stadium.

Snow removal crews are scheduled to pre-treat major thoroughfares and roads as the first phrase of wet weather comes down on Friday.

Once the snow hits, Kansas City will have as many as 200 trucks on the streets. About 140 of them will be dump trucks and 60 to 65 will be pickups that will run snow plows through residential roads.

Crews working split shifts will clear arterial streets from curb to curb. Residential streets will be cleared with a passable lane of 7 or 8 feet.

The first pass is expected to be completed in about 12 hours. The plowing will continue Saturday, Sunday and Monday if necessary, said City Manager Troy Schulte.

Officials are asking residents to stay home if they can and remove their cars from the street to allow the snow plows to come through.

“A street with less cars on it allows the plows to move faster and we can get through more of the city on a quicker basis,” Schulte said.

Kansas City will open its 10 community centers to people who may lose electricity or need a place to stay warm.

KCATA will use their buses as warming centers at 10th and Main streets, if the temperature this weekend dips below 10 degrees, said spokeswoman Petrina Parker.

The Kansas Highway Patrol announced that, starting 6 p.m. Friday, they will tow away vehicles left abandoned on interstate and highway shoulders.

Mayor Sly James said residents should plan for the inclement weather.

“Be sure to think ahead and prepare yourself as best you can for a life without electricity if necessary,” James said. “There is going to be more work ahead on just keeping the roads cleared and the snow removed.”

Snow fall is expected to begin throughout the region Friday evening and continue Saturday. Strong winds will accompany the snow and reduce visibility in parts of the region.

“We are watching the forecast and it keeps adjusting,” Bolon said. “The conditions are going to be tough for us as well as for the public.”

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Glenn E. Rice covers crime, courts and breaking news for The Kansas City Star, where he’s worked since 1988. Rice is a Kansas City native and a graduate of the University of Central Missouri.
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