LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A burst of snow and sleet created a slick glaze across parts of Kentucky on Tuesday, forcing schools to close and causing numerous wrecks.
"It's pretty treacherous," said Jodi Shacklette, a Kentucky State Police dispatcher in Elizabethtown. "We're working wrecks just left and right."
South of Elizabethtown, a semitrailer jackknifed Tuesday morning along Interstate 65, causing a traffic backup on northbound lanes, Shacklette said.
Snowfall amounts neared a half-foot in portions of central and western Kentucky.
Forecasters predicted another round of light precipitation later in the day in both regions. Heavier accumulations were forecast in parts of northeastern and eastern Kentucky.
Winter storm warnings remained in effect for parts of the Bluegrass state.
Jim McGrane, postmaster at Beaver Dam in Ohio County, said his usual 45-minute morning commute from Bowling Green took an extra half hour when he encountered snow-covered roads as he drove north.
"Like everybody else in Kentucky, you hope for the best," he said. "It's not like we live in New England or some place like that where you're used to it all the time. You have to just slow down and watch what you're doing and pay attention to the other guy and not be in too much of a rush."
Ohio County, in western Kentucky, received 4 to 5 inches of snow, the National Weather Service said.
In central Kentucky, Spencer County had 5 inches of snow, while 4 inches fell in Frankfort, 3 inches in Bardstown, 2 to 3 inches in parts of Lexington and 2 inches in Bullitt County, the weather service said.
Light ice accumulated in parts of south-central Kentucky, it said.
"There's basically a real thin strip of pretty heavy snow stretching across central Kentucky," said weather service meteorologist John Denman in Louisville.
In Anderson County, business was slow Tuesday morning at Bo's Smoke Shop in Lawrenceburg. Store manager Lecy Elovipz said she'd
had about 10 customers, about a third of her usual business.
We were rushed yesterday," she said. "People knew it was coming, so they were stocking up."
Elsewhere in western Kentucky, Mortons Gap in Hopkins County received 4 inches of sleet and snow and portions of Muhlenberg County had about 3 inches, said Robin Smith, a weather service
meteorologist in Paducah.
Accumulations elsewhere in western Kentucky were generally under
an inch, Smith said.
In northeastern Kentucky, forecasters predicted snowfall amounts of 3 to 5 inches in some areas through early Tuesday afternoon. Lighter accumulations were predicted elsewhere in the region.
Forecasters predicted snow and sleet accumulations ranging from
1 to 5 inches in parts of eastern Kentucky later Tuesday.
Road crews across the state were mobilized to clear slick roads.
"Our crews are prepared to work around the clock to keep roads in the best condition," Kentucky Transportation Secretary Joe Prather said Monday. "We advise motorists to pay close attention to developing conditions and to try to avoid driving when roads get treacherous."
Forecasters predicted a warming trend with highs in the upper 30s Wednesday and reaching the mid to upper 40s Thursday.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)