Metro Detroit pummeled in winter blast

Mount Clemens, Harrison Township dig out of heavy snow

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published January 28, 2019

 Macomb County was hit with 4 inches of snow during its first major winter storm on Jan. 28. Snow fell throughout the day with additional accumulation on Jan. 29.

Macomb County was hit with 4 inches of snow during its first major winter storm on Jan. 28. Snow fell throughout the day with additional accumulation on Jan. 29.

Photos by Julie Snyder

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MOUNT CLEMENS/HARRISON TOWNSHIP — The first major winter storm of 2019 in southeast Michigan certainly lived up to weather forecasters’ expectations.

The warnings that the Macomb County area would likely receive between 4 and 6 inches of snow throughout the day on Jan. 28, with temperatures hovering in the freezing range, forced many school closures; a majority of those announced the previous evening, before the snow started to fall.

L’Anse Creuse Public Schools and Mount Clemens Community Schools were among those closures.

The snow, as predicted, started falling in Macomb County at 9 a.m. Within a short time, streets and yards were covered in white. Traffic moved slowly, while snow plow trucks worked to clear major roadways.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for the area on Jan. 27 through midnight Jan. 29.

The city of Mount Clemens officially declared a snow emergency at 1 p.m. Jan. 28.

“When a snow emergency has been declared, all vehicles parked on any major street must be removed within six hours and/or within 12 hours on any local street or alley per City Ordinance,” Assistant City Manager/Public Services Director Jeffrey Wood said in a prepared statement. “Once the entire street has been cleared of snow from curb to curb and no additional snow has accumulated or is predicted to accumulate and the snow emergency cancelled, vehicles may then resume parking on that street.”

Harrison Township falls under the umbrella of the Macomb County Department of Roads.

“We do not declare snow emergencies,” said Supervisor Ken Verkest. “Cities are responsible for their roads and they are more likely to have a snow emergency policy. We do not have any such policy.”

Regardless, vehicles should be moved from residential streets for both safety purposes and for plows, should they come from a private contractor or from the county.

The Macomb County Department of Roads has more than 1,800 miles of state and county roads to maintain. In a large snow event, the county first will clear expressways and state roads like Gratiot, followed by primary roads like the mile roads, then local roads.

According to the NWS, by late afternoon, the total snow accumulation in the area was approximately 4 inches, with temperatures keeping steady at around 26 degree and a wind chill of -1. The forecast was for additional snow, approximately a half-inch, through the night and on Tuesday, Jan. 29, with wind gusts between 10 and 20 mph. A cold snap was expected for the middle of the week, with highs near zero on Jan. 30 and a high near 4 degrees on Jan. 31.

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