More Bad Weather, More Closures
UPDATE: A fresh chilly blast means more lousy driving conditions
By Richard Whittaker,
8:45AM, Tue. Jan. 28, 2014
It seems Friday's heavy winter conditions weren't a one-off. With temperatures dropping into the low 20s again last night, Austin and Travis County are seeing many of the terrible road conditions and resultant school and government delays and closures again this morning.
Austin ISD and Lake Travis just announced that classes are canceled today.
Eanes, Leander, Pflugerville and Round Rock are working on a two hour delay, but this may change.
Manor ISD is currently on a two hour delay, but is asking parents to keep in contact as they are currently monitoring conditions.
UPDATE 8:49am Mere minutes after we put this story live, it's already changing. Del Valle has followed AISD's lead and is closed for the day.
UPDATE 10:25am Eanes, Manor, Pflugerville and Round Rock have now canceled classes. Unlike last Friday, when many districts kept their afterschool extracurricular events going, the following events have been cancelled:
• Manor: Financial Aid night for juniors and seniors.
• Round Rock: All YMCA, athletic and fine arts events. Varsity basketball is rescheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 29, 6:30pm.
• AISD: All events, including the football match against Westlake.
Colleges and Universities
UT Austin and Austin Community College will be closed until Noon (last night, ACC had planned to open at 10:30am, but have responded to deteriorating conditions. As of 8am, UT wasn't going to close at all.)
Huston-Tillotson University, Southwestern and Concordia are delayed until 11am.
St. Edwards is open as regular, as seemingly is Texas State.
UPDATE 11:25am UT Austin has finally, if only partially, pulled the plug. Classes will be canceled for the rest of day. Buildings will remain open for people already on campus and there will be a reduced bus schedule. No decision made yet about evening activities.
Local and State Government
The city of Austin has announced that non-essential staff should stay home until noon. Council has also canceled this morning's work session.
Today has officially become a headache for the Travis County Elections Division: This is the date of the House District 50 Special Run-Off Election, but the voting locations at schools in Austin, Elgin and Manor ISD will not open until 10am. All other locations have been open since 7am.
Showing how bad things have got, the Central Texas Red Cross is closing their physical Austin offices today. However, their regular charitable services will still be available http://redcross.org and 1-800-Red-Cross.
UPDATE 9:33am Travis County has announced its offices are still open, but staff are urged to be cautious. The commissioners court hearing has been pushed back till 10:30am
UPDATE 9:50am Social security offices in Austin and Georgetown are closed until 10am. If you have a scheduled appointment, call 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. The Social Security Administration also asks us to remind people that many services are available online at http://www.socialsecurity.gov.
Texas Parks and Wildlife will close its offices today: No word on park closures yet.
UPDATE 2:17pm City offices are now open, but since there was no trash pick-up, all collection days have been pushed back one day. So if you were scheduled to have your trash and recycling taken away today, that'll go Wednesday morning. After that, Wednesday goes to Thursday, Thursday to Friday, and Friday to Saturday. All bins need to be out by 6:30am.
The Texas Secretary of State's office is closed. However, this should not affect results or reporting in HD50.
Roads and Transportation
There have been 80 collisions over night, many of them due to black ice. APD Police Chief Art Acevedo just Tweeted, "Conditions are very bad out there. Slow down and avoid driving if at all possible before noon. These are deceptive conditions, slow down!!"
Capital Metro is running a regular schedule, but Metro Rail riders should expect a 10 minute delay.
UPDATE 8:50am APD has issued an extensive list of closures, blockages and long delays as of 8:15am, including
• Overpasses on MoPac at Braker, Far West, Northland, William Cannon
• US-183 at Burnet, US 290, I-45 and Lakeline
• SH-71 at Montopolis
• US 290 at I-35, S. Capital of Texas Highway
• Southbound I-35 upper and lower decks
These conditions will change, so be careful out there.
UPDATE 10:20am APD is now confirming that there have been 214 collisions so far, with two police cruisers rear ended.
UPDATE 2:15pm APD's final count for the freeze: 274 vehicle collisions between midnight and 1pm: Fortunately, none resulted in serious injuries or fatalities. Be warned, there are still some road closures, at APD discretion.
Keep checking back all day for updates, and follow us on Twitter at @ACNewsdesk.