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Kristin Murphy, KSL

Troopers respond to 410 crashes as snowstorm blankets Utah

By KSL.com | Updated - Feb 6th, 2019 @ 5:43pm | Posted - Feb 6th, 2019 @ 6:14am


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SALT LAKE CITY — A major winter storm prompted several school districts in Utah to cancel classes and turned the morning commute into a mess along the Wasatch Front Wednesday.

Utah Highway Patrol troopers have responded to 410 crashes across the state since snow began falling Tuesday, officials said. Of those crashes, 211 were reported between midnight Wednesday to early Wednesday afternoon, Utah Highway Patrol said on Twitter.

Many places across the state have received more than 1 foot of snow since Tuesday, the National Weather Service reported. For example, Millcreek and Tooele had received 15 1/2 inches of snow as of noon Wednesday.

In southern Utah, Cedar City reported 12.2 inches as of 5 a.m. Wednesday.

Utah's mountains also received several feet of snow. Brighton Crest in the Wasatch Mountains led the reports with 63 inches of new snow as of 5 a.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.

National Weather Service meteorologists forecasted more snow for Salt Lake County Wednesday afternoon. Officials said a lake effect snow band across Salt Lake County was expected to bring rates of 1 to 2 inches of snow per hour.

The agency tweeted that more snow was also expected in Salt Lake and Davis counties Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

"Generally, (1 to 4 inches), with locally higher amounts possible in lake effect, but some uncertainty exists regarding lake effect strength and location," the agency tweeted.

Traffic and road closures

Salt Lake County was hit the hardest, the KSL Traffic Center reported, but motorists experienced slick conditions from Ogden to Utah County throughout Wednesday.

"If you have any flexibility with your schedule or if you can work from home, today is the day," Utah Department of Transportation spokesman John Gleason said in a tweet. "Please avoid driving this morning if possible. UDOT snow plows are out in force, but driving conditions remain difficult this morning. Please stay safe!"

The worst reported crash was an 11-vehicle pileup that closed southbound I-15 near 2300 North in Salt Lake City for almost two hours. Details about the crash, including the severity of injuries, weren't immediately released, but the freeway wasn't cleared and reopened until 12:30 p.m.

Little Cottonwood Canyon closed for avalanche control for much of the day, but reopened about 4:45 p.m., according to the KSL Traffic Center. Big Cottonwood Canyon closed from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. for avalanche control, according to Unified police.

Tire chains or four-wheel drive is required in both canyons, as of 4:45 p.m., according to Unified police. Avalanche danger remains high in both canyons.

Some TRAX trains were delayed for up to an hour Wednesday, but most were back on schedule as of 5:30 p.m., Utah Transit Authority said on Twitter.

As of 5:12 p.m., the southbound Blue Line was experiencing delays of 15 to 20 minutes from the City Center station, UTA said in a tweet.

Get traffic updates on KSL Newsradio and check commute times on the KSL Traffic Page.

Here is a list of school and business closures for Wednesday:

K-12 school district closures:

  • Canyons School District
  • Granite School District
  • Jordan School District
  • Murray City School District
  • Park City School District
  • Salt Lake City School District
  • Tooele County School District

Pre-school, K-12 school closures:

  • American Preparatory Schools in Draper
  • Athlos Academy School in Herriman
  • Ascent Academy campuses
  • Beehive Science and Technology Academy
  • Bonneville Academy in Stansbury Park
  • Canyon Rim Academy in Salt Lake City
  • Capitol Hill Academy in Salt Lake City
  • Carden Memorial School in Salt Lake City
  • Career Path High in Kaysville
  • Channing Hall in Draper
  • Dancing Moose Montessori School in West Valley City
  • East Hollywood High School, West Valley City
  • Hawthorn Academy in South Jordan and West Jordan
  • Holy Trinity Church and School in Riverton
  • Intermountain Christian School in Holladay
  • Juan Diego Catholic schools in Draper
  • Judge Memorial High School in Salt Lake City
  • Lady of Lourdes School in Salt Lake City
  • Liahona Academy in Pleasant Grove
  • Mana Academy in West Valley City
  • McGillis School in Salt Lake City
  • Monticello Academy in West Valley City
  • Mount Vernon Academy in Murray
  • North Star Academy in Bluffdale
  • Paradigm High School in South Jordan
  • Providence Hall Charter Schools in Herriman (all three)
  • Rowland Hall-St. Mark's in Salt Lake City
  • Salt Lake Arts Academy Charter School
  • Salt Lake School for the Performing Arts
  • St. Francis Xavier School in Kearns
  • St. Vincent de Paul Parish School in Holladay
  • South Canyon Montessori in Sandy
  • Summit Academy in Draper
  • Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind
  • Weilenmann School of Discovery in Summit Park
  • Willow Creek Montessori

K-12 schools on delays:

  • American International School of Utah in Murray
  • John Hancock Charter School, Pleasant Grove
  • Lakeview Academy in Sarotoga Springs

Colleges with canceled classes:

  • The University of Utah has canceled all classes for the day. Hospitals near the U. remain open.
  • Westminster College
  • Salt Lake Community College
  • LDS Business College
  • Rosemand University of Health Sciences in South Jordan
  • Intermountain Christian College in Holladay
  • Ameritech College of Healthcare in Draper
  • BYU Salt Lake Center classes scheduled before noon will be canceled. Further notifications will be sent regarding any additional cancellations

State and city government offices:

  • State government offices will open at noon, UDOT spokesman John Gleason told KSL.
  • The Bureau of Land Management office in Salt Lake City is closed.
  • Draper City offices closed until noon
  • Cottonwood Heights City offices are open with minimal staffing. Non-essential services will not be available.
  • Midvale City Hall is closed but is still operating with a limited staff to provide essential services.
  • Riverton offices will be closed all day.
  • Salt Lake County nonessential offices are closed.
  • South Jordan City Hall, courts and police are still open, but several city services are unavailable due to weather.
  • Tooele County offices are closed until noon.
  • All Salt Lake County Library locations and all Salt Lake City Public Library locations are closed.

Open government services:

  • Courts in 5th District: Beaver, Iron and Washington counties are open in all locations.
  • Courts in 7th District: Carbon, Grand, Emery and San Juan counties are open in all locations.

Trash and Recycle cancellations:

  • Alpine City trash collection
  • Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District: affected areas include Cottonwood Heights, White City, SE Unincorporated Islands, Sandy Annexed Islands and Herriman

Additional closures:

  • Clark Planetarium
  • Discovery Gateway Children's Museum
  • Dugway Proving Ground
  • Hogle Zoo is closed until noon.
  • Utah Museum of Fine Arts
  • Tracy Aviary
  • West Valley Fitness Center is closed until 4 p.m.

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