Ice Storm Updates: Crash Shuts Down Interstate in West Texas

Live Updates
  • A winter storm is bringing ice and freezing rain across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kentucky and Tennessee Tuesday.
  • Texas Governor Gregg Abbott has mobilized emergency response resources across several state agencies. He said roadways are "very dangerous" and urged people to stay home as conditions are likely to worsen.
  • Ice and sleet have impacted 1,600 roads in Texas, causing several collisions in Texas. At least two fatal car accidents were reported in Austin and Arlington and a state trooper was seriously injured in Navarro County.
  • Hundreds of flights have already been delayed or canceled across the U.S., especially at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and Dallas Love Field.
  • Southwest Airlines has canceled more than 500 flights, FlightAware reports.
  • About 7,000 power outages were reported across Texas. Abbott said those are local issues and ensured Texans that the state power grid is functioning.
  • Another round of sleet and freezing rain is hitting Oklahoma, the National Weather Service reports, as several counties remain under winter weather advisories. Officials are also advising residents stay off the roads due to ice.
  • A polar vortex is also expected to bring sub-zero temperatures to the northeast later this week.

Live updates have ended.

Crash Shuts Down Interstate in West Texas

Several crashed vehicles stopped traffic along an interstate in west Texas on Tuesday.

Officials warned the roadway would be backed up "for some time" as law enforcement and emergency responders worked to clear the area.

Daniel Alvarado, the communications director for Reeves County, shared a video Tuesday on Facebook showing several semi-trucks and other vehicles stopped along the interstate after some drivers lost control. The crashed vehicles were located near the county lines of Jeff Davis and Reeves counties, where Interstates 10 and 20 intersect.

Eastbound lanes were expected to be blocked "for some time today," Alvarado said, and some of the semi-trucks were "jackknifed into the side of the roadway, blocking both lanes." The semi-trucks were surrounded by fog, and Alvarado warned mist was "creating a lot of havoc for drivers at this time."

Emergency responders were assessing one or two drivers involved in the collisions, Alvarado said. He instructed other drivers at the scene to wait for emergency officials to reach them before attempting to get out of their vehicles.

Officials will continue to monitor the road conditions throughout the day.

Ice, Sleet Cover Roadways in Texas

Drivers in Texas are facing dangerous conditions on the roads amid the ongoing winter ice storm.

Cars and tractor trailers were driving slowly on I-20 near Duncanville, TX because the road was almost a complete sheet of solid ice.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area was blanketed in sleet as the winter storm continues.

Official continue to urge residents to stay home while state and local crews are working to plow roads.

In San Antonio, TX, roadways were filled will vehicle pileups due to ice on elevated areas. It reportedly took several hours for police, plow trucks and city brine trucks to clear up the scene on Loop 1604.

Ice accumulations of 0.25 to 0.5 inch were forecasted on ramps, overpasses and elevated bridges north of Loop 1604 amid freezing temperatures, city councilman Clayton Perry said in a statement.

The city said police reported at least 10 weather-relates traffic incidents between 3 a.m. and 10 a.m. Tuesday morning.

An ice storm warning is now in effect for the Dallas-Fort Worth area west of I-35W until early Thursday.

"Winter Storm Warning continues elsewhere for persisting hazardous travel," the National Weather Service said.

Video Shows Trees Drooping Under Weight of Ice

Video shows trees weighed down by ice in Arkansas as the winter storm moves through the region.

Trees are covered in snow and the weight of the ice pushed branches toward the ground.

Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders activated the state's National Guard troops on Monday in anticipation of weather impacts on local roads.

Officials with the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management (ADEM) urged people to avoid traveling when possible on Tuesday as road conditions worsened.

"We're just urging people, if they don't have to get out and drive, please don't," ADEM Director A.J. Gary said during a Tuesday media briefing.

Gary encouraged Arkansas residents to use the Arkansas Department of Transportation's app to receive updates on road conditions throughout the state. By Tuesday afternoon, roads were "starting to see accumulation," ADEM said in a tweet that included photos of snow and ice beginning to stick to the roads.

ADEM said shortly after noon on Tuesday that the state's emergency operations center was activated to provide assistance to people in need as the storm conditions worsen.

Texas State Trooper Injured Responding to Car Accident

The icy road conditions have caused several car accidents across Texas, resulting in fatalities and the hospitalization of a state trooper.

A Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper was seriously injured while responding to a traffic accident on I-45 near Corsicana, TX.

A spokesman for DPS told KTVT-TV that the trooper was taken to a hospital.

Republican State Representative Cody Harris said he was praying for the trooper and urged residents to stay off the roads.

The winter storm warning for Navarro County has been extended until Thursday morning, according to the National Weather Service. Sleet and freezing rain is still expected across the region.

In Arlington, TX, a man died after his car went "airborne" off an overpass Monday night, police report.

Police were called to a single-vehicle crash on I-20 at around 8:45 pm, KTVT-TV reported. Witnesses told responding officers that the car appeared to "lose control" as it crossed the overpass.

According to witnesses, the black 1997 Toyota 4Runner slide into the guardrail, went airborne, and rolled down and embankment.

The 45-year-old driver was taken to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead, police said. Investigators believe he was driving at "unsafe speeds" on the icy roadways and was not wearing a seatbelt.

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Dallas Airports Cancel Hundreds of Flights

Nearly 3,000 flights have been delayed across the United States amid winter weather storms.

There have been 2,986 flights delayed and 1,687 canceled across the country, as of 2:45 p.m. ET, according to flight tracker FlightAware.

Dallas-based Southwest Airlines has canceled about 600 flights Tuesday and delayed over 300 others. American Airlines has also canceled just over 500 flights and delayed 390 flights.

In a reply tweet, American Airlines said "the snow is definitely giving us a hard time today."

Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) has canceled 418 departing flights and 461 arriving flights. About 300 flights have been delayed coming in and out of DFW.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport has canceled about 130 departing flights and just under 150 arriving flights.

At Dallas Love Field, 136 departing flights and 125 arriving flights were canceled. Dallas Love Field Airport lifted a ground stop for all incoming flights before noon Tuesday.

Schools Close Across Central Texas

Dozens of school districts across central Texas announced classrooms will be closed Tuesday as the winter storm passes through the state.

Many schools will also remain closed on Wednesday, with a winter storm warning expected to last in the area through early Thursday.

On Monday, the Austin Independent School District announced on Twitter that its schools would be closed Tuesday. By midday Tuesday, the district said schools will remain closed through Wednesday, with Thursday plans dependent upon the weather.

The Bastrop Independent School District made similar announcements about school closures for Tuesday and Wednesday, as did the Blanco Independent School District, the Hutto Independent School District and several others.

The Jarrell Independent School District in Williamson County cited a warning from the National Weather Service about the storm bringing "a significant icing event with multiple rounds of freezing rain" in its announcement about keeping schools closed through Wednesday on Twitter.

Many other school districts have said they are waiting to announce a decision about Wednesday classes until they know more about how the storm will develop. Most schools are expected to announce those decisions by Tuesday evening.

KVUE-TV compiled a list of all the school districts in central Texas that announced closures or other scheduling changes due to the weather. That list will continue to be updated as additional closures are announced, according to the station.

Nearly 7,000 Power Outages Reported in Texas

There have been about 7,000 power outages reported across Texas that are being addressed at the local level, Governor Gregg Abbott said during a briefing Tuesday morning.

The governor stressed that these outages are not related to the state power grid.

"The power grid itself is functioning effectively as we speak," he said. "There's not anticipated to be any challenges to the power grid in the state of Texas."

State officials said the ice and freezing rain could cause downed tree branches and powerlines, leading to localized outages.

The head of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) said he is monitoring the power situation but does not expect to enact emergency conditions or conservations.

There are over 4,000 personnel working on response efforts, including the Texas National Guard.

Crews are ready to deliver food and water by helicopter, begin search and rescue operations and manage the more than 60 warming centers opened locally across Texas, Abbott said.

About 1600 Texas Roadways Impacted by Ice

Texas Governor Greg Abbott said the winter weather is expected to continue until Thursday.

During a press briefing with state officials Tuesday, Abbott said sub-freezing temperatures are expected this week. Heavy rain and even flooding could come Wednesday and Thursday in the central and southeast parts of the state, he added.

Abbott said travel conditions on the roads statewide are "very dangerous," with about 1,600 roadways impacted by ice and freezing rain.

The roads will remain dangerous, with the possibility of black ice, to continue for the next 24 hours.

Officials are still urging residents to stay off the roads.

The Texas Department of Public Safety has been responding to numerous car accidents as a result of icy roads.

"The safest place to be if you're in the impacted area is at home," DPS Director Steven McCraw said.

If people must drive, McCraw urges them to drive slowly.

"If you think you're driving too fast for the conditions, you are," he said.

He told people who are in accidents to move off the roadway and remain inside their vehicle to wait for emergency personnel.

McCaw said there was a state trooper who was hospitalized with serious injuries. The trooper was hit by a driver who was going too fast, lost control of the car and hit the trooper while he was checking on another vehicle in need.

Texas Department of Transportation chief Marc Williams said these conditions are expected to continue for the next 36 to 48 hours and will likely get worse.

He called the situation "dangerous and dynamic."

One Person Killed in 10-Vehicle Crash

At least one person was killed in a 10-vehicle crash Tuesday morning, according to the Austin Fire Department.

The crash occurred in south Austin along an entrance ramp near Ben White Boulevard, fire officials said. One person died at the scene, the department said in a Tuesday morning tweet posted around 6:30 a.m. local time.

A few minutes later, the department said road collisions "tripled" since a report earlier that morning. Officials said they were encountering "multiple car pile ups with significant injuries and fatality."

By 10 a.m., fire officials said they had responded to more than 90 vehicle crashes since midnight. Three of those crashes involved fire units, the department added.

Fire and safety officials have urged Austin residents to avoid road travel when possible amid the icy weather conditions.

"Please, STAY HOME AND OFF THE ROADS, give space heaters plenty of space, never use your oven to stay warm, and keep generators outside," Austin fire officials said.

Temperatures to Drop Below Zero in Northeast

Freezing temperatures are also impacting the northeast U.S.

AccuWeather meteorologists warn that a quick, intense burst of Artic air will deliver a cold shock across New England and New York later this week.

"There will be places that will be 30-50 degrees colder Saturday morning than they were Thursday afternoon," AccuWeather meteorologist Tom Kines said.

Temperatures in Boston, Massachusetts are expected to drop from 40 degrees Thursday to 10 below zero by Saturday morning. Caribu, Maine is expected to be hit with temperatures at 28 degrees below zero this weekend.

"At peak during the outbreak from late Friday to Saturday... temperatures will plunge between 30 and 50 degrees below zero where many people live in central and northern New England and could plummet close to an unworldly 100 below zero on top of Mount Washington, New Hampshire," AccuWeather meteorologist Adam Douty said.

In western New York, areas south of Lake Ontario and Erie will be receiving snowfall this week.

New York City is expected to see wind chills below zero. No snow is forecasted though, continuing a historic streak for a snowless winter.

Some reports are calling this freezing temperature event a "polar vortex." This comes as New York City has experienced above average temperatures all winter.

Texas Power Grid Currently Meeting Demand

At of this hour, the state power grid is meeting demand as an ice storm moves through Texas.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which operates the state's power grid, expects power to be able to meet demand in Texas this week.

The grid is operating under "normal conditions," ERCOT's website said, around 10:30 a.m. local time. ERCOT said on Monday that it will be keeping an eye on weather conditions as the storm develops.

There is increased concern and scrutiny over the grid's ability to meet demand following the widespread outages that occurred during a February 2021 winter storm. With this storm, power grid experts told KXAS-TV that they do not anticipate any statewide power outages, though they said it is possible that icy conditions will impact power-creating wind turbines in West Texas.

It is possible that higher temperatures forecast for the Houston and San Antonio areas could offset other impacts the storm could have on the state's power supply, grid experts told the station.

Watch: Texas Governor Greg Abbott Holds Briefing

Texas Governor Greg Abbott will give an update on the state's response to the storm hitting the region momentarily.

Abbott, along with other state officials, are scheduled to hold a press conference at 10:30 a.m. local time from the State Operations Center in Austin.

Watch live here.

Icy Roads Lead to Several Accidents Across Texas

Ice and freezing rain are causing dangerous road conditions across Texas.

Parked cars, bridges and ramps were coated in ice overnight. Freezing rain continues to accumulate on roadways in north Texas.

AccuWeather reporter Bill Wadell said the mix of sleet and freezing rain in Dallas has lead to several car accidents.

Weather Nation captured the moment a car skidded along ice in Dallas Monday.

There were also several collisions in Austin with at least one fatality reported.

Fire crews were deployed to incidents in the early morning hours. After reporting 18 traffic incident responses at 5:30 am, Austin Fire said the number of collisions tripped within two hours.

Since midnight, the Austin Fire Department responded to over 90 accidents, including three involving their own units.

Officials are urging people to stay off the roads Tuesday, as the National Weather Service expects travel conditions to worsen through Wednesday.

Southwest Airlines Cancels Over 300 Flights

Winter weather has brought ice and freezing rain across the southern U.S., leading to hundreds of canceled and delayed flights Tuesday.

Texas airports are experiencing flight disruptions, according to flight tracker

Dallas-Forth Worth International Airport (DFW) has canceled 300 departing flights and 272 arriving flights. About 80 cancelations of departing flights are delayed from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

There are about 70 departing flights and 60 arriving flights at Dallas Love Field that have been canceled. There is currently a Traffic Management Program in effect for traffic arrving at DFW Tuesday.

This comes after nearly 350 flights at Dallas Fort Worth and more than 200 at Dallas Love Field were canceled due to winter weather Monday.

Dallas-based Southwest Airlines has canceled about 320 flights and delayed over 170 flights.

American Airlines said on Twitter that staffing at DFW is limited due to the current weather conditions.

The National Weather Service said the weather will have moderate to major travel impacts around the Dallas-Fort Worth area through Wednesday. Much of north Texas has been placed under a winter storm wanring until Thursday morning.