A freezing cold front came roaring into the Franklin County area early Thursday morning causing a bit of apprehension.
All the county school districts — Ottawa, Central Heights, Wellsville and West Franklin — canceled school for Thursday. The temperatures dropped from the 40s into the 20s in a couple of hours. Sleet and freezing rain was reported in the area by mid-morning.
It was a busy morning for Ottawa street crews, Michael Haeffele, public works director, said.
“We have been out treating roads all morning with salt and chat,” he said. “That is all we can do. There is nothing else.”
Haeffele said pretreating the city streets was not an option.
“The conditions were not right for pretreat,” he said. “Salt brine is a brine, a wet mixture. With as much rain as we got last night, it would have washed everything away. No way we could have pretreated.”
The Ottawa water plant reported three-tenths of an inch of rain from midnight to 7 a.m. Thursday.
Haeffele said despite the rain and sleet, the city streets were in good shape.
“The streets in town for the most part are clear,” he said. “It got a little slick for a little bit. All the main routes are clear and open.”
He said people need to use good judgment when traveling in this type of weather.
“Obviously, it is winter time and cold...you still need to use caution because there still will be slick spots,” Haeffele said. “There is no way shape or form we could get every patch of ice. Since there is no snow with it, putting the salt down is really all we can do.”