Winter snowfall takes Claiborne County by surprise

Winter snowfall takes Claiborne County by surprise; schools canceled

Posted:
Claiborne County schools closed Friday because of snow. Claiborne County schools closed Friday because of snow.
"I first received a call from a local police officer advising me that the roads were getting white and the bridges were icing over," said Bob Oakes, assistant director of Claiborne County Schools. "I first received a call from a local police officer advising me that the roads were getting white and the bridges were icing over," said Bob Oakes, assistant director of Claiborne County Schools.
Sheriff David Ray said he was excited to put the department's new Chevy Tahoes on the road. Sheriff David Ray said he was excited to put the department's new Chevy Tahoes on the road.

By JESSA LEWIS
6 News Reporter

TAZEWELL (WATE) - Several school systems, including Claiborne County Schools, were forced to close Friday because of the weather.

In Claiborne County, school administrators said the weather that came in overnight threw them into a panic mode. People in the area woke up to see the land covered in white.

Not only did the snow stick, but it covered major roadways.

"I first received a call from a local police officer advising me that the roads were getting white and the bridges were icing over," said Bob Oakes, assistant director of Claiborne County Schools.

Schools were closed because of the snowfall.

Oakes says they ultimately decided to close school Friday because it was only scheduled to be a half day of school.

They couldn't delay the school day, because if they had, they would have had to turn around and send the kids right back home.

"We always err on the side of caution when it comes to our students and the safety of our students is our utmost concern, so we went ahead and made the decision to close," Oakes said.

Some of the buses were already in route Friday morning by the time school was called off.

A caller also told 6 News that some students were dropped off at one school in the morning, only to meet locked doors.

"It's under investigation right now and we have not received all the facts on it. We're still investigating it and getting to the bottom of it, and we will get to the bottom of it, but that's the only thing I can comment on at this time," said Oakes.

Sheriff David Ray says he's grateful the department's new four wheel drive vehicles came in when they did.

"We had six new Tahoes come in this week and we're anxious to get them striped up and on the road to protect our citizens from weather like this," Sheriff Ray said.

Still, he says he, too, was caught off guard.

"It's been quieter than you might think. This, of course, was a surprise to everybody. We probably should have been listening to Channel 6."

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WATE. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.