Amarillo, TX – Progress continues to be made as the City of Amarillo digs out from Monday’s blizzard. City Manager Jarrett Atkinson says significant progress was made overnight by all city operations, including at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport, where the main runway and associated taxiways are now open for flight operations. The airlines will begin making their plans as to when flight operations will resume.
Mayor Pro Tem Jim Simms, who was interviewed this morning on CNN’s morning news program Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien, commented on the City’s progress.
“It’s hard to believe that it was 63 degrees on Sunday and then the next day, have 20 inches of snow on the ground,” Simms says. “I’d like to thank everybody for their hard work. City staff started monitoring the storm Sunday afternoon and once the storm hit, our crews went into action. They’ve put in a lot of hard work and long hours, keeping good attitudes through it all – it’s a job well done.”
While yesterday’s focus was assisting stranded motorists, today’s focus will be the streets. Atkinson says it will most likely take the brunt of the day to get snow removed from the roads.
“Everyone has done phenomenal and what’s even more amazing is the progress we’ve been able to make since the snow and wind stopped around 3 p.m. yesterday,” Atkinson says. “Crews hit the majority of the arterials last night and will continue throughout today and tonight.”
Atkinson adds that backhoes and loaders from Parks and Utilities have been assigned to assist in clearing the streets today, including work in the downtown area. Downtown will be limited to digging operations due to the extreme drifting on the east/west streets. While progress is being made, if you don’t have to travel today, residents are still encouraged to stay put while roads continued to be plowed and sanded.
“There are some areas we are not going to be able to get through today even with the plows,” Atkinson says. “It’s simply because there’s so much snow that even the plows can’t get through it. I am confident that between our crews and today’s sunshine, the streets will be returned to normal as quickly as possible.”
For those needing transit services, the City expects to have both fixed route transit and Spec-Trans services operational by tomorrow.
Meantime, the City thanks everyone in advance for their cooperation, understanding and patience as we work to provide services to Amarillo residents. For more information, please monitor local news outlets and visit www.amarillo.gov.