State of emergency declared over Miss. ice storm

Bruce Newman, Oxford Eagle/AP Photo
Bruce Newman, Oxford Eagle/AP Photo

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - An ice storm warning was out for much of the Mississippi Delta until 6 p.m. Tuesday as motorists were being warned of continuing icy conditions on roads and bridges - a warning that extended into northeastern counties.

Gov. Phil Bryant late Monday night declared a state of emergency in several counties hit hard by wintry ice storm. Bryant's office said at least 45 counties had reported being affected by the storms.

"We are taking the threat of severe weather seriously, and we are looking to ensure that local officials have the tools they need to respond properly," Bryant said in a statement.

The National Weather Service says ice accumulations of one-quarter to one-half an inch were reported in the region Monday. Another quarter inch to half an inch of ice accumulation is expected Tuesday with locally higher amounts possible.

By late Monday, 45 counties reported to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency some type of icy conditions. Weather service forecasters said most of the state's northern counties and much of central Mississippi saw rain, frozen or not, throughout Monday.

More of the same was expected Tuesday with the chance of rain in northern Mississippi counties at 70 percent, increasing to 100 percent in the afternoon, forecasters said. Some parts of the state that weren't threatened by icy conditions continued to be under flood warnings or flash flood warnings on Monday.

Mark McConnell, MDOT's chief engineer, said crews will be treating iced bridges. As a precaution, he said crews also prepared the U.S. 82 bridge over the Mississippi River at Greenville and the bridges at the intersection of interstates 20 and 55 in Jackson.

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