Elkhart County Commissioners have now officially declared a state of emergency for Elkhart County following Tuesday night’s blizzard-like conditions.
If a county has been declared in a "state of emergency," that means the county board of commissioners has determined that conditions are so bad that they can no longer be assured of providing emergency services to the public in a timely fashion.
Also, Goshen Mayor Allan Kauffman has declared a general state of emergency for the city. Local police are asking motorists to stay off the roads if at all possible.
According to the county declaration, significant snow accumulation and excessive high winds resulting in the blowing and drifting of snow on roadways countywide warranted the call, which could be in effect for the next seven days unless terminated by the president of the Board of Commissioners.
Emergency response times may be significantly delayed due to travel conditions. A county emergency declaration initiates county emergency plans, and allows additional resources to be provided by the state to assist local response efforts.
Under the declaration, all Elkhart County offices, with the exception of essential 24 hour offices, will remain closed until the declaration has been terminated.
Currently, 16 additional counties have also made emergency declarations, including: Boone, Dekalb, Fayette, Jasper, LaGrange, LaPorte, Marshal, Newton, Noble, Porter, Pulaski, Starke, Tipton, Wells, White and Whitley.
According to the National Weather Service, Goshen Municipal Airport reported a top sustained wind of 32 mph shortly before 10 p.m. Tuesday, with wind gusts at that time reported at 47 mph.
From about 8 p.m. to 2 a.m., winds were consistently blowing between 20 and 32 mph.
Winds Wednesday morning were between 10 and 12 mph.
Local weather observers reported that 5.2 inches of snow fell in the Goshen area overnight. That included some sleet, resulting in a heavy, wet snow.
A Level 1 travel advisory warning has also been issued for Elkhart County.
A travel advisory is notification that road conditions are hazardous and will impede motorists’ ability to travel.
A travel advisory at a "warning" level means the general public should refrain from all travel, comply with necessary emergency measures, cooperate with public officials and disaster services forces in executing operations plans, and comply with the directions of properly identified officers.
Under a "watch" level, road conditions are still dangerous, and only essential travel is recommended.
For additional information about county travel advisories, please consult the statewide travel advisory map.
The map is continually updated with travel advisory information as reported by each county. The map is available at http://www.in.gov/dhs/files/travel-advisory-map/.
Elkhart County Blood Drive Canceled ue to Winter Storm
The American Red Cross blood drive scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 2, at the American Red Cross Goshen Donor Center has been canceled.
Although this blood drive is cancelled, the Red Cross encourages donors to please make an appointment to give in the coming weeks to help maintain a stable blood supply.
GoshenDonor Center, located at 226 S. Main St. in Goshen
Monday & Friday: 7 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday & Wednesday: 11:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Thursday: noon – 5 p.m.
Saturday: 7 a.m. – noon
Sunday: 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. - By Appointment