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Bitter cold replaces freezing rain, sleet

Sam gause | The Natchez Democrat Natchez Public Works Department employee Eddie Coleman bundles up while spreading sand on the road down to Magnolia Bluffs Casino to provide traction to motorist during the icy conditions.

Sam gause | The Natchez Democrat
Natchez Public Works Department employee Eddie Coleman bundles up while spreading sand on the road down to Magnolia Bluffs Casino to provide traction to motorist during the icy conditions.

NATCHEZ — National Weather Service forecasts for the Miss-Lou today call for clear skies and a high temperature of 43 degrees — quite a change from Thursday.

With a low temperature of 25 degrees still forecast for this morning, refreezing could still happen on some roads and bridges.

However, with clear skies and a north wind helping dry roadways, “while refreezing may occur in some locations, it is not quite as big of a concern … especially on the well-traveled roads,” the NWS’ Jackson office noted in a statement.

As of late Thursday afternoon, most area schools were set to be open for their usual schedule today.

One exception was Trinity Episcopal Day School, which planned to open at 10 a.m. today and close at the usual time.

Another was Adams County Christian School, which was already scheduled to be closed all day today so teachers can attend an annual convention.

It was a different story Thursday.

A mix of sleet and freezing rain that hit this area overnight Wednesday meant city, county and state employees had to be up early Thursday morning to make sure residents were safe.

The wintry mix stopped falling by early Thursday afternoon. But crews hit the roads Wednesday night to keep an eye out for ice on streets and bridges, Adams County Road Manager Robbie Dollar said.

By 9 a.m. Thursday, road crews had switched to sanding roads, bridges and overpasses throughout the county.

Capt Tom McGehee of the Natchez Police Department was keeping an eye on the bridge Thursday morning. But freezing rain had stopped by early Thursday afternoon without a bridge closing.

Police and deputies were in constant contact with dispatch, civil defense and MDOT Thursday to keep abreast of hazardous weather conditions.

Adams County government offices closed around 10 a.m. Thursday due to the weather, while city government offices stayed open.

Schools that were closed the entire day included all campuses of Copiah-Lincoln Community College, Franklin County schools and Delta Charter School.

Cathedral School and Trinity Episcopal Day School both remained open Thursday.

Adams County Christian School dismissed classes in the morning Thursday. The Natchez-Adams School District closed schools early Thursday afternoon on a staggered schedule from 12:45 to 1:40 p.m.

Other school activities were affected as well. The Natchez High girls’ basketball tournament scheduled for Thursday night was rescheduled for 9 a.m. Saturday. After school activities at Natchez-Adams schools were cancelled.

Vershal Hogan contributed to this report.