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Snow blast: Icy conditions shut down North Coast schools, public events

More snow possible this evening
By Katie Frankowicz

The Daily Astorian

Published on February 21, 2018 10:29AM

Last changed on February 21, 2018 11:03AM

Snow made driving difficult near Clatsop Community College in Astoria.

Katie Frankowicz/The Daily Astorian

Snow made driving difficult near Clatsop Community College in Astoria.

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Pedestrians cross a slush-covered Commercial Street in Astoria as snow falls.

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian

Pedestrians cross a slush-covered Commercial Street in Astoria as snow falls.

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With the exception of Jewell, schools were closed throughout Clatsop County Wednesday morning as icy conditions set in after a snow day that wouldn’t quite start or stop.

A number of Astoria city services were also closed, including Lil’ Sprouts and Port of Play. The Astoria Aquatic Center and the Astoria Recreation Center opened later than usual at 9 a.m. The Kids Zone at the recreation center was closed. The Astoria Column gift shop also had a delayed start, opening from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

A special Astoria School Board meeting to tour schools Wednesday night has been postponed until March 7. A community facility engagement event at Astoria Middle School planned for Thursday has been postponed until March 8.

A meeting with federal veterans officials at Clatsop Post 12 American Legion that had been set for Thursday has been canceled.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory on Tuesday for across the North Coast. The advisory was set to continue through early Wednesday morning. Now, the weather service says more snow could fall at low elevations tonight and into early Thursday.

The weather service predicts the heaviest amounts of snow will likely be over the Coast Range. The lower Columbia and Willamette valleys could see around 1 inch accumulations. Snow will possibly hit the North Coast in the evening.

Snow dusted parts of the county early Tuesday morning but melted away as a mix of rain and snow continued throughout the day. Just when it seemed the rain would triumph, snow charged back, falling in thick flurries that quickly blanketed Astoria’s hills in the late afternoon. Several events and meetings were canceled due to the snowy conditions, including an Astoria City Council meeting and a Columbia Forum talk by Clatsop County District Attorney Josh Marquis. Several downtown businesses closed early due to the weather.

Both lanes of U.S. Highway 30 about 13 miles east of Astoria were closed for nearly two hours Tuesday. Icy roads caused a four-car accident just after 4 p.m.

All of the cars involved were towed from the scene. One driver was taken to a hospital with a major — but not life-threatening — back injury.

When an Oregon State Police trooper responded to that accident, he lost control of the car while rounding a corner near Emerald Heights. The car slid into the oncoming lane and collided broadside with the front end of a pickup truck. The police car was towed from the area, but no injuries were reported.

Up in the hills of Astoria, where the snow stuck around through the later part of the afternoon and evening, some extremely hopeful children and their parents attempted to sled at parks.

Edward Stratton and Jack Heffernan contributed to this report.


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