Pittsburg County preparing for winter weather

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Reported by: Angela Hong
Updated: 12/04/2013 6:39 pm Published: 12/04/2013 4:03 pm

Counties to the south of Tulsa are preparing to deal with ice and freezing rain.

The Pittsburg County Sheriff's Office said four Humvees are going to play a big role if there is an ice storm.

Pittsgurg County officials said they are fueled and they are ready to handle whatever comes their way.

In a late afternoon meeting Wednesday, different Pittsburg County emergency departments gathered to listen to the latest forecast from the National Weather Service and to plan out their response in the case of an ice storm.

"(We) can't always predict exactly what's going to happen, but this county is pretty good at working together and coordinating the response," said Lois Lupardus, the interim Emergency Management.director.

The sheriff said the county is prepared to handle ice events, especially because they've been through the 2007 ice storm.

"It was catastrophe. Our lines were weak, and our communications was weak. We weren't prepared," said Sheriff Joel Kerns.

At the time, people in this county lost power for nearly two weeks and crews couldn't get to the rural, hilly areas where people without power needed help, but now the Sheriff's Office has Humvees.

"They can reach places no other vehicle can," said Kerns.

While emergency crews prepared, so did residents.

"We're shopping so we're ready for the storm," said Jay Elliot.

Local grocery stores were busy for the last two days.

"You better be prepared because it could just pass, but sometimes it can get so bad it breaks these power lines and poles," said Elliot.

And since ice is harder to drive on than snow so the sheriff said, "Try not to travel. If you need help, we can get to you."

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