Update (1:30 p.m.): Gov. Kevin Stitt announced he has requested a federal disaster declaration.
“Yesterday President Biden pledged the federal government’s support for Oklahoma when we spoke by phone,” Stitt said in a statement Wednesday. “I am now urging the President and his administration to act quickly and deliver on our request to help Oklahomans recover from this historic storm.”
“The combination of nearly two weeks of record-breaking low temperatures, heavy snow, and freezing rain has had significant impacts on communities across the state,” said Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security Director Mark Gower.
If approved, the disaster declaration would allow for reimbursement to cities, counties and tribes for costs of eligible emergency protective measures related to mass care and sheltering operations through FEMA’s public assistance program. It would also authorize federal resources to assist state and local governments as they continue to respond to the widespread winter weather event, according to a state news release.
Snowfall in Tulsa was measured at 5.1 inches from Tuesday night's storm, according to National Weather Service reports.
Update (10 a.m.): Snowfall reports: Okmulgee, 5 inches; Owasso, 2.3 inches; Broken Arrow, 3 inches; Hominy, 6 inches; Bartlesville, 4 inches; Miami, 3.5 inches; Drumright, 3.5 inches; Muskogee, 2.8 inches. Source: National Weather Service Tulsa local storm reports
Update (6 a.m.): A winter storm warning is in effect through 6 p.m. Wednesday, with 1-2 inches of snow still forecast to fall in some spots of Tulsa and areas to the north.
According to the National Weather Service, Tulsa recorded 4.4 inches overnight.
City crews have 124 water line breaks listed early Wednesday, which can also affect road conditions for drivers running into freezing leaks.
A winter storm that arrived Tuesday evening in Tulsa, bringing even more snow to the area, will continue to make travel difficult amid days of freezing temperatures and dangerous wind chills.
However, a forecaster said, “this storm won’t be as bad” as the last one, which hit just days ago.
Between snowstorms, the bitter cold continued, with temperatures well below freezing hampering efforts to fight a massive fire at a business in the Pearl District on Tuesday afternoon and evening.
The new snowstorm, which arrived around 8 p.m. Tuesday, was expected to add 4-6 inches of snow to the accumulation from a storm Sunday and Monday.
A winter storm warning went into effect Tuesday at 4 p.m. and will remain in effect until 6 a.m. Thursday for Tulsa and much of the state, as the storm slowly pushes through the area, forecasters said.
The first of the new snow was expected to fall Tuesday evening and into Wednesday morning. Mike Teague, a forecaster at the National Weather Service in Tulsa, said the snow should taper off around 10 a.m. Wednesday and that Tulsa should not see much more after that.
Sunday and Monday’s storm had strong winds that added blowing and drifting snow dangers to driving conditions, but Teague said this storm will have winds of only up to 10 mph.
“Anytime you get this amount of snow, there will be road dangers, but this storm won’t be as bad as the other one,” Teague said.
The Oklahoma Department of Transportation said sunlight and clear conditions between storms Tuesday benefited highways across the state, and many were reported to have at least one clear lane of travel.
The Tulsa area’s highways are “mostly clear,” according to ODOT, though travel is discouraged as slick spots remain.
“This next snowfall event is expected to worsen travel conditions in much of the state beginning this afternoon and later this evening,” ODOT said in a statement Tuesday. “Snow-packed and slick highways and interstates are reported in all counties except Cimarron, Texas and Beaver counties” in the Oklahoma Panhandle.
According to the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol has responded to 152 noninjury collisions, 53 injury collisions and 572 motorist assists since Sunday.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health reported that area hospitals had treated 25 people with transportation-related injuries since Sunday.
They also have had 190 slip or fall injuries reported since Sunday.
EMSA reported Tuesday that its medics have responded to four cold-exposure calls in the Tulsa area and said the agency is still “very concerned” about cold-exposure and hypothermia calls because of freezing temperatures.
According to the National Weather Service, the below-zero wind chills are gone, but temperatures will still be below freezing until Friday or Saturday.
Wednesday’s low is expected to be 10 degrees, with Thursday’s high 22 degrees and a low of 5 degrees, forecasters said.
“We may finally warm above freezing briefly by Friday afternoon in some locations, and definitely by Saturday afternoon, breaking what will most likely go down as the second longest streak of time spent below freezing on record,” said Michael Bowlan, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Tulsa.
“Early next week could see highs jump back above normal for a change, which will be welcome relief after what has been a bitterly cold stretch around here.”
Three alarm fire next to Marshall Brewing Co.
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Photos: Tulsa firefighers battle a three alarm blaze next to Marshall Brewing Co.