WOODWARD — Life is returning to normal after a Monday blizzard dumped as much as 17 inches of snow in areas of northwest Oklahoma.
Crews made significant improvement in clearing roads Wednesday, and all highways in northwest Oklahoma were open by late afternoon, state Transportation Department officials reported. A few closures remained in north-central Oklahoma because of downed power lines.
Woodward Fire Chief Steve Day said city streets also were clear after two days of crews working around the clock.
“Everything is coming together real good now,” Day said. “There are a few places in neighborhoods still, but the main road and highways are good. County crews and state crews really did a great job of working to clear the roads as quickly as possible.”
Wednesday morning a train smashed into a car that was stuck in snow on railroad tracks in Woodward. Authorities said the driver was able to exit the car, but couldn't push the vehicle from the tracks.
Schools will start opening Thursday after being closed Tuesday and Wednesday, a state Education Department official said.
“Woodward will be back in school tomorrow,” said Kim Hale, regional accreditation officer for northwest Oklahoma. “I'm not sure about what the smaller schools around the area will do, but the schools in the Panhandle are back open, too.
“Mostly it's just a matter of restoring electricity to the rest. As soon as they get that back, they'll open.”
Hale said she doesn't think any of the school districts are in any danger of having to make up the snow days.
“The law requires 1,080 hours or 175 instructional days,” she said. “Most of the schools have built in hours just in case it snows and you would miss multiple days. Most of the schools are not close to having to add hours or days, though.”