Six people were taken to Newman Regional Health after three ice-related incidents near Emporia late Friday afternoon and Friday evening.
Accidents, both with injuries and without injuries, began to affect Lyon County just before 5pm as a light drizzle began to freeze, particularly on elevated surfaces:
*Shortly before 5:00 p.m., an incident occurred at the Emporia Tollgate on the Kansas Turnpike that ultimately sent three people to Newman Regional Health for treatment. Further details are pending through Emporia Police. * A few minutes later, authorities went to the east side of Emporia after a car veered off Interstate 35 near the East US Highway 59 interchange after the driver, Luis Tosca-Placeres of Dodge City, had lost vehicle control. Two passengers, 49-year-old Helmes Fernandez Roque and 46-year-old Daymarelis Cervantes Perera, both of Dodge City, were taken to Newman Regional Health: Roque with suspected minor injuries, Perera with suspected serious injuries.* Shortly before 7:30 pm, a vehicle crashed near roads 150 and H7. One person was later hospitalized. Details will be released by Lyon County deputies later.
Road crews have been out since approximately 5:00 p.m., but Lyon County Sgt. Zach Shafer says travel conditions remain dire and drivers should wait before traveling if possible. Conditions will improve after sunrise on Saturday as temperatures climb from about 20 degrees to nearly 50 in the late afternoon.
7:30pm Friday: Four people taken to Newman Regional Health after several wrecks near Emporia; Lyon County has been removed from the Winter Weather Advisory
Lyon County law enforcement has been under strain from incident management after driving conditions went from wet to icy in a flash last Friday.
In addition to several non-injury sliding incidents since 5pm, law enforcement and Emporia EMS responded to three injury incidents, two between 5pm and 5.20pm and another just before 7pm: 20. Three people were taken to Newman Regional Health from the scene of an accident at the Emporia Interchange of the Kansas Turnpike, with one person taken to Newman Regional Health after a crash on Interstate 35 at the East US Highway 50 intersection. Another injury crash it occurred near route 150 and H-7. Details of that incident are pending.
Road crews have been out, but Kandrive.org still has Lyon County highways as seasonal or partially covered. Emporia Police has Level 2 Accident Reporting where drivers in uninjured wrecks can exchange insurance information at the crash sites and then file reports with Emporia Police Headquarters later, around 5pm :00.
As of 7:00 p.m., neighboring counties have not encountered the travel issues noted in Lyon County.
Winter weather warnings have been canceled early for several counties in the area, including Lyon, Chase, Morris and Wabaunsee. Coffey, Greenwood and Osage counties remain on alert until 10 p.m.
5.30pm Friday: Flash Freeze in progress on Emporia, Lyon County bridges; two injuries reported
Travel conditions deteriorated markedly just before sunset in the KVOE listening area.
Light precipitation began to freeze shortly before 5:00 p.m., leading to injury accidents reported at the Kansas Turnpike Emporia Toll and Interstate 35-mile 133 marker, or East US Highway 50 interchange, between 5:00 p.m. 00 and 17:15. Further details are pending.
Officially, Lyon County Highways are listed on Kandrive.org as seasonal, meaning mostly wet with isolated icing. However, Lyon County Sheriff Jeff Cope says the quick freeze is fully underway on bridges in the county. Lyon County Emergency Communications says road crews are now out tending paved roads and highways. Emporia Police, meanwhile, has moved to Level 2 Accident Reporting, where drivers involved in accidents without injuries can exchange insurance information at the scene of the accident and report the accident at Emporia Police Headquarters after that conditions have improved.
Travel conditions may be poor until at least late Friday evening, so stay with KVOE, KVOE.com and KVOE social media for updates.
2pm-5pm Friday: All area counties on Winter Weather Advisory until 10pm
The prospect of potential travel problems prompted a winter weather advisory for Lyon County and all surrounding counties.
The National Weather Service operates all area counties until 10pm. A thin haze of freezing drizzle, freezing rain or sleet is expected.
Slippery roads, sidewalks and parking lots are at least possible. Power outages are also possible.
11:30am Friday: Coverage area for potential winter mix expanded to area-wide
It wasn’t in the forecast Friday morning, but a mix of winter precipitation is now possible across the area through midnight.
The National Weather Service says it is now expecting a freezing mix of freezing rain and sleet. It now says activity is possible throughout the KVOE listening area after targeting areas along and east of the Kansas Turnpike or south of Interstate 35.
Stay with KVOE, KVOE.com and KVOE social media for weather and travel updates.
10.30am Friday: Freezing rain, sleet now possible south of Emporia for remainder of Friday
Conditions in Emporia and further north appear to be calm for the rest of Friday. It may not be that far south of the city.
The National Weather Service says it is now expecting a freezing mix of freezing rain and sleet until midnight. The Weather Service is targeting areas along and east of Interstate 35 and the Kansas Turnpike for this activity, which could obviously lead to dangerous driving conditions well into early Saturday morning.
KVOE, KVOE.com and KVOE social media will keep you updated.