Winter Storm Landon causes power outages, flight cancellations and death
By Morgan Miles, Staff Writer
Winter Storm Landon surged through Cincinnati and the Central United States last week, causing power outages, road blockages and flight cancellations.
Area-wide snow emergencies in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky impacted township administrative offices, businesses and outpatient facilities.
Similar cancellations in the Cincinnati area also impacted universities, with Xavier deciding to turn to remote learning on Thursday and Friday last week. Northern Kentucky University, Miami University and Mount St. Joseph canceled classes or opted for remote learning.
Heavy sleet and freezing rain transitioned into snowfall. Winds clocking in anywhere from 20 to 30 miles per hour turned temperatures in the teens to zero degrees, and the temperature remained below freezing throughout the storm. Three inches of sleet created hazardous conditions on roads and caused many to shut down completely.
Road workers were unable to prepare the roads for the sudden freezing conditions, and as a result the workers had to warn commuters that travel would be unsafe.
Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval urged commuters to stay home and recommended staying away from busier roads if traveling was necessary. Bus drivers traveling on Cincinnati’s West Side roads reported trouble making it up hills.
Police eventually had to resort to “emergency accident reporting” protocol, encouraging minor car accidents to be reported later.
Flights arriving at and departing from Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky Airports were canceled.
Early into the storm, Duke Energy officials saw a transmission line go down in Clermont County, in addition to reporting 12 active power outages and 160 people without power.
The company called in 300 out of state workers to assist with power outages in the area.
The sleet, freezing rain and snowfall also wallopped areas outside of Cincinnati. Chicago, Indianapolis and Detroit were a few major metro areas hit by the storm. As a result, 100 million Americans faced threats caused by the weather conditions from Wednesday to Sunday.
Throughout the Central U.S., 3,000 flights were canceled. Interstates were shut down as governors in states as far as Texas warned people to stay off the roads.
A 16-car pileup in Memphis ended with two people in critical condition.
Landon caused 250,000 homes and businesses throughout the nation to lose power. Power lines were coated in ice; slapping together due to the high winds, the lines caused many outages.
To combat deaths caused by power outages, Texas deployed 10,000 linemen in-state and an additional 2,000 out of state to repair power lines as soon as possible.
Landon also spawned a tornado. On Thursday afternoon, a tornado touched down in Alabama, leaving one dead and three in critical condition. Several people were left trapped in their homes during the tornado aftermath, waiting for nearby agencies to respond with aid.
Though the storm has since abated, ice remains piled on Cincinnati roads.