Madison and Morgan County sparkled beneath a blanket of thick snowfall last Wednesday, Jan. 16. Local citizens awoke Wednesday morning to find a picturesque winter wonderland outside their doorsteps. Children bundled up to build snowmen and wage snowball fights with friends instead of heading off to school. Last-minute shoppers descended upon the local Ingles in Madison, eager to purchase all of the staple supplies to make it through the sudden snow-apocalypse.
“We were well stocked, but we were swamped for quite a while,” said Robin Best, who noted the store ran low on bottled water, eggs, and milk.
“We never ran out of anything, but we were running low,” said Best.
Morgan County schools and non-essential government agencies and local businesses closed Wednesday and Thursday. Local authorities urged citizens to stay off the roads until the ice and snow slush melted.
While many families nestled together in their homes to enjoy the unexpected days-off, some commuters and other motorists ventured out, facing slippery conditions as they tried to navigate their vehicles through icy interstates and back roads.
According to Morgan County Sheriff Robert Markley, both City of Madison police officers and county officers worked a total of 19 car wrecks that Wednesday, not including multiple calls for motorist assistance and stuck vehicles along the roadways. The following day, authorities responded to another five car wrecks. According to Markley, City of Madison police and firefighters smoothly worked with county police and firefighters to handle the high volume of calls due to the snowstorm.
“Everybody came together and worked really hard to help everyone who needed it during the storm and after,” said Markley.
Fortunately, none of the accidents reported during snow days resulted in any fatalities.
While students enjoyed a couple of days off from school due to the snow, the Morgan County School System has announced a make-up day will be required of students on March 16, which was supposed to be a day off for a “Planned Professional Learning Day.”
According to Assistant Principal Sarah Burbach, if any more snow days occur, part of an upcoming break will have to be shortened.
“If more bad weather happens before the February Break, we may have to call in the Wednesday, Thursday, and/or Friday of Winter Break as possible make-up days,” said Burbach.