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Friday, December 23, 2022

CLEVELAND (WJW) — Northeast Ohio will remain under a severe winter storm warning through 7 a.m. Saturday. A Wind Chill Warning is also in effect until 10 a.m. Saturday for most of Northeast Ohio.

Previous blizzard warnings in place Friday in some parts of the state have been canceled.

According to the National Weather Service, the warning is in effect for a multi-hazard winter storm with strong winds, very cold temperatures, snow and blowing snow. Total snow accumulations of 2 to 6 inches are possible with wind gusts as high as 60 mph. Wind chill values could be as low as 30 below zero.

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10:15 p.m. – University Hospitals’ Dr. Ryan Marino offered tips for avoiding frostbite when outside in wind chill temperatures in the negative double-digits. Watch that coverage in the player below:

9:10 p.m. – A fourth person was confirmed dead in a pileup of dozens of cars along the Ohio Turnpike in Sandusky County. Traffic remains blocked in both directions between exits 91 and 118 as crews work to remove vehicles from the roadway, including 15 commercial vehicles.

8:31 p.m. – Winter storm warnings have been extended until 7 a.m. Saturday, according to the Ohio Emergency Management Agency. Though little snow accumulation is expected, frequent wind gusts over 30 mph will blow snow across roadways, making for hazardous driving. Travel should be avoided, if possible, agency officials said.

“We expect winds and dangerous wind chills to continue overnight and into tomorrow. This continues to cause blowing snow which leads to whiteout conditions,” said Col. Charles Jones, Ohio State Highway Patrol superintendent. “As a result, this creates very hazardous driving conditions. If possible, motorists are encouraged to stay off the roadways.”

Wind gusts right now are getting as high as 40 mph around the state. Frequent gusts over 30 mph are expected overnight.

Power outages persist statewide, and times to restore electricity vary across the state.

8:05 p.m. – State troopers confirmed a third fatality at the scene of a pileup involving at least 46 cars along the Ohio Turnpike in Sandusky County on Friday afternoon. Crews continue to clear vehicles from the scene, and traffic remains blocked in both directions.

6:34 p.m. – The Ohio State Highway Patrol confirmed a second person was killed in a pileup involving at least 46 cars along the Ohio Turnpike in Sandusky County on Friday afternoon, caused by wintry conditions.

“Whiteout conditions persist,” the patrol stated on Twitter. “Travel is not recommended.”

6:30 p.m. – Nearly 10,000 electric customers in Northeast Ohio are without power as of Friday evening, including more than 3,700 in Cuyahoga County and more than 1,700 in Erie County. That’s down from more than 20,000 outages reported earlier Friday.

In Lorain County, a warming center opened at Salvation Army, 716 Broad St., Elyria, at 6:30 p.m., amid ongoing power outages in the county. There were about 400 power outages reported in the county, down from about 3,500 earlier in the day.

6:28 p.m. – Gov. Mike DeWine in a statement said four people were killed and many more have been injured in weather-related vehicle crashes amid the winter storm. He urged Ohioans to stay home.

“Our sympathy goes to those families who have lost a loved one during this severe weather situation in Ohio,” he said. “The road conditions continue to be very dangerous across the state, with white outs and extremely cold temperatures continuing. Please continue to remain home if at all possible and be vigilant with these extremely dangerous road conditions.”

4:10 p.m. – Ohio Department of Transportation cameras show traffic flowing along Interstate 90 at state Route 2, near Lakefront Airport, following numerous crashes earlier Friday, including a jackknifed tractor trailer. Earlier Friday, drivers were cautioned against driving on portions of I-90 due to icy conditions.

3:40 p.m. – Tens of thousands of electric customers in Northeast Ohio are without power, including nearly 8,000 in Cuyahoga County and more than 3,600 in Lorain County. FirstEnergy reports more than 30,000 affected customers out of 2.1 million in its service area. AEP Ohio reports more than 7,400 affected customers, out of 1.5 million. Get the latest updates on power outages in your county here.

3:30 p.m. – Lorain High School, 2600 Ashland Ave., Lorain, was opened as a warming center, due to the ongoing power outage in the city. The school opened at 3:30 p.m. to anyone without power or heat or who are in need of warmth. The school will remain open indefinitely.

Nearly 3,900 customers were reportedly without power as of Friday afternoon, according to FirstEnergy, out of a total 21,000 outages reported in its service area.

Emergency crews from Ohio Edison/First Energy are working to restore power “within an appropriate time,” reads a release from the city.

2:59 p.m.The Ohio Turnpike is closed in both directions between state Route 53 and state Route 4 in Sandusky County, near Groton Township, Erie County, for multiple crashes involving about 50 vehicles, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

One fatality was reported, along with multiple injuries. Crashed motorists are being bused to a local facility to get warm. Eastbound traffic is being diverted off the turnpike at exit 91; westbound traffic is being diverted to exit 118.

2:41 p.m. – Power outages persist statewide, according to a statewide storm update from the Ohio Emergency Management Agency, and times to restore service vary across Ohio.

Wind gusts were measured at 60 mph in Eastern Ohio and 72 mph in Erie County. Temperatures dipped below -30 degrees in parts of Sandusky, Ashland, Medina and Hancock counties.

Multiple counties have declared snow emergencies, including at the highest level 3. Whiteout conditions are decreasing visibility and contributing to crashes across the state.

The turnpike crash near mile marker 106 in Sandusky County was caused by whiteout conditions, according to the agency. The parallel state Route 2 in nearby Erie County is also closed for an accident with “severe” injury.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol has responded to more than 300 crashes and helped more than 1,200 motorists since 8 a.m. Thursday. Jackknifed commercial trucks, downed power lines and vehicle crashes have closed numerous roads, some of which will be closed for a long time. Anyone who becomes stranded on a highway and needs help should call #677 to have a trooper dispatched to their location. Those in an emergency should call 911.

2:28 p.m. – State troopers are at a crash involving at least 16 vehicles, reported just before noon along state Route 2 between U.S. Route 2 and state Route 13 in Huron County, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol. Multiple, non-life threatening injuries were reported. It is currently unclear whether the incident is one large crash or multiple individual crashes, according to a release. Wreckers are en route to remove the vehicles from the roadway.

2:16 p.m. – Ohio Turnpike update – All WB traffic will be diverted off at Exit-118 US 250/Sandusky) all EB traffic will be diverted off at Exit-91 (SR 53/Sandusky). All EB/WB lanes remain blocked @ MP 106.0 (Sandusky Co) due to multiple crashes, long delays expected.

2:13 p.m. – Amazon closes distribution sites due to storm. “The health and safety of our employees, customers and the drivers who deliver packages is our top priority which is why we continually monitor weather reports and adjust operations as needed,” Barbara Agrait, an Amazon spokesperson told FOX 8.  “We’ve been tracking storms in various regions throughout the U.S., and out of an abundance of caution, we’ve temporarily closed some of our sites in the impacted areas. We’ll continue monitoring weather patterns and will reopen sites and resume operations when it’s safe to do so.”

2:04 p.m. – All lanes are blocked EB and WB @ MP 106.0 on Ohio Turnpike (Sandusky Co) due to multiple crashes. Travelers should consider an alternate route, long delays expected.

2:04 p.m. – SR2 between US6 and SR13 in Huron Twp/Huron City is CLOSED in BOTH DIRECTIONS due to multiple traffic crashes.

1:55 p.m. – FirstEnergy power outages hit more than 33K. Check the map here.

1:49 p.m. – Ohio Turnpike closure in Erie County from milepost 107.1 to 106. All westbound lanes blocked.

1:48 p.m. – SR-2 East CLOSED in Huron County beyond US-6 East because of a crash.

1:40 p.m. A Brunswick-area plow truck went off the road while plowing on West 130th Street.

1:20 p.m. JUST IN – An F-150 lost control and struck a light pole on the ramp from I90 E/B to Columbia Rd. in Westlake around 8:30 a.m., according to a press release from the Westlake Police Department. No one was injured in the crash.

1:00 p.m. Due to hazardous road conditions, drivers have been asked by the Cleveland Division of Police to avoid I-90 west when traveling from east of Cleveland. The freeway is very icy due to water blowing onto the freeway from the lake and freezing on the westbound side of I-90 between Eddy Rd. and East 55th Street.  Alternate routes include  I-271 to I-480.

12:20 p.m. A Garfield Heights police cruiser was struck by a vehicle while on the scene of a multi-vehicle accident on I-480 at Broadway on Friday morning, according to the department. The officer’s vehicle had to be towed and the officer was taken to the hospital for evaluation. There are no reports of other injuries.

12:10 p.m. Northeast Ohio is currently experiencing arctic temperatures with wind chills reaching -35°F.

11:40 a.m.  Traffic is exiting I-90 west at East 72 after a semi jackknifed on the roadway between East 72 and MLK.

10:27 a.m. – FirstEnergy power outages hit 29K. Check the map here.

10:17 a.m. – I-90 at Eddy Rd. has reopened following a crash.

10:15 a.m. – I-271 North to US-422 East ramp CLOSED because of a crash.

10:12 a.m. Amtrak has issued some cancellations due to the blizzard. Check here.

10:05 a.m. The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Wild Winter Lights is canceled for Friday night. Check the list here.

9:45 a.m. The ramp from I-271 North to US-422 East is closed because of a crash.

Visibility is down to a quarter of a mile. Drivers are encouraged to drive below the speed limit while visibility is low and roads are icy.

Isaac Hunt, a spokesperson from ODOT, advises drivers to give themselves extra time to get to their destination. More in the video below:

9:30 a.m. A Blizzard Warning has been issued in Northeast Ohio until 4 a.m. Saturday. The Wind Chill Warning is also still in effect until 10 a.m. Saturday.

I-90/SR-2 west is closed at I-90/SR-2/SR-283 west because of a crash. More in the video below:

9:25 a.m. Snow is clearing from southwest to northeast in our viewing area. Ashtabula is still experiencing moderate snowfall at this time. The rest of the area is dealing with what’s already on the ground – about an inch or so. Visibility is low as strong winds are blowing snow around.

8:55 a.m. The FOX 8 weather team says Northeast Ohio is experiencing blizzard-like conditions. Stay informed with the forecast here.

8:50 a.m. The crash on I-90 has moved over to the side of the road. Traffic is moving along.

FOX 8’s Stacey Frey is live at the airport and says three flights are on time Friday morning.

8:25 a.m. The Cleveland Cavaliers made the decision to keep Friday night’s game as scheduled. More here.

Below is a look at areas of downtown Cleveland and I-90. Check out our photo gallery here.

8:05 a.m. The right lane is blocked on I-90/SR-2 East at East 72nd Street due to a crash causing a significant back up.

7:25 a.m. Several flights have been canceled at Hopkins Airport. Check your flight here.

Stacey Frey caught up with a snow plow driver at the airport as he picked up his daughter. “I drove in. It was a mistake,” he said.

7 a.m. The left lane is blocked on I-71 South at US-42/Pearl Road/Fulton Road/ West 25th Street due to a crash.

Now that the rain has fully transitioned to snow, ODOT spokesman Brent Kovacs says crews can salt the roadways. He says there are 300 plows out on the roads. As temperatures continue to dip, ODOT uses a product that contains beet molasses with the sugar removed that ensures the salt stays active in frigid temps as low as -40°F. Hear more from Kovacs in the video below:

6:30 a.m. Strong winds blow through downtown Cleveland. FOX 8 meteorologist Alexis Walters reports wind gusts of up to 50 mph. Temps are in the teens with wind chills well below zero.

6:15 a.m. ODOT says they have over 70 crews on the roads and reminds drivers to give plenty of room to work.

Cleveland salt trucks are out and about on the roadways seen in the video below:

6 a.m. Wadsworth police have issued a snow emergency parking ban on all city streets.

Speeds are reduced on I-90 in Lake County.

5:30 a.m. The Lake County sheriff’s office says power lines are down at I-90 and Vrooman covering some of the roadway.

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Check First Energy power outages here. See AEP outages here.

Here’s a list of communities that have issued parking bans.

Know before you go. Several flights have been canceled at Hopkins Airport. Check your flight here.

Strong winds have caused blowing snow to reduce visibility, along with icy road conditions, causing crashes on Northeast Ohio roadways.

The storm has triggered several closures in the area.

Stay with FOX 8 for the latest weather conditions.