Level 3 snow emergency in effect for Huron, Erie counties

Drivers found on roadways during Level 3 could be charged with "misconduct at emergency."
Scott Seitz
Jan 6, 2014


Huron County Sheriff Dane Howard has issued a Level 3 weather emergency, effective at noon today.

(UPDATE: The snow emergency was reduced to a Level 2 early Tuesday morning.)

"With the hazardous conditions we're currently having, this is the prudent thing to do," Howard said. 

By issuing the Level 3 at noon, Howard said it gives time for residents to travel home safely before dark.

"With the increased wind gusts up to 40 miles per hour and extreme cold as low as minus-40 below zero with the wind chill tonight, the temperatures being displayed are an extreme hazard to our citizens and emergency services personnel," Howard said. "The safety of our citizens of this county is paramount and with this in mind, I have ordered a Level 3 snow emergency — effective at noon today — to be evaluated periodically."

The driver of a vehicle found on the roadways during a Level 3 could be charged with "misconduct at emergency."

"Emergency facility personnel" are permitted on the roadways in a Level 3.

Those include physicians, registered nurses and licensed practical nurses, physician's assistants, health care workers, clerical staffs, and any individual who is a security officer performing security services in an emergency facility.

"No one should be driving during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel or a personal emergency exists," Howard said. "All employees should contact their employer to see if they should report to work. Those traveling on the roads may subject themselves to arrest."

Howard said it it important for residents seeking information about the Level 3 to refer to the HCSO Facebook page, the Reflector site or local radio.

"Our emergency lines are being tied up," the sheriff said, adding only emergency calls should be made to (419) 663-2828.

Howard said residents currently at work are permitted to travel home.

Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth has also issued a Level 3 for Erie County.

"The conditions just aren't getting any better," Sigsworth said.



hopefully the businesses in town will close so their employees can make it home safely!

Whiskey Tango F...

It snows in northern ohio. We used to be ok with it, but now it controls us. Go to michigan, buffalo, wisconsin, or anywhere north. Sad really.


what happens if I am currently at work- since it was only a level 2 this am.. and when I leave work at 1 to go straight home- its a level 3? Will I be charged with anything?


I am also wondering the same thing!


The Seneca County sheriff (I know that this is not Seneca County) or Tiffin Police chief (I forget which) stated on Facebook that the officer would call your employer to find out if you are needed at work or are coming home from work if you were stopped. They added that the people they're after are the ones going out for unnecessary shopping.


There allowing you time to get home they just want everyone off the road this evening


Whiskey Tango...I believe it is the wind chill more than the snow. Good decision on Howard's part, before it could turn into a "sad really" as you referred it as.


Bystander I don't think so. If you tell them you just got sent home from work and offer a work number to call your boss you should be fine. And yes it snows in Ohio. But why risk it? Roads are completely iced over with snow on top. And with temps this cold salt doesn't work, so you can't salt the roadways. So it's best not to have anyone on the roads. Period. Who cares about weather in other states. If you have a problem with how these counties determine level emergencies, then leave. Go to Wisconsin. Different states have different preparedness. A state that is used to getting a lot snow and cold weather handles things differently then a state that doesn't get as much. If you were down south right now and got an inch of snow they'd close the whole city down. Why? Because their preparedness is different. It's that simple. No point in having people on the road in dangerous driving conditions.


Well put Bro!

Whiskey Tango F...

If I leave with all the others, you won't need to worry about when these offices are open. Attitudes such as this are what continue to chase away wage earners as well as tax payers. Plenty of people sitting around waiting for more cash and prizes to fall from the sky. Unemployment extensions are going away, and Janesville made their message heard. Norwalk sweat shop furniture successfully cut their payroll in half, destroying the living wages there. All this has nothing to do with weather and/or road closures. I guess it comes down to politeness and hospitality. People read this site from far away and make decisions based on what we write.


Back in the day people went out and played in the snow= sledding, riding shovels, skiing to town. Not saying that was a good thing to do but snow days and nights were great fun. Can't play those games these days Too much traffic...too many people would complain. Ths sheriff is trying to save lives and do the right thing. Just thinking about the good old days. When 4 wheel drives got popular we could make some cash with a tow chain so lots of trucks were out who did not need to be. Lots of fun--probably not legal then but no one paid much attention.

William Jeffers...

Is running out for smokes, beer, scratchers and Charlie Biggs Chicken considered an "Emergency" for residents of our fine county?

Whiskey Tango F...

They mostly walk to supply their needs. Highly unlikely that they have auto insurance either. Thank god for direct deposit for the cash and prizes, no more need to wait for the check and mail.

William Jeffers...

Some have access to "wheels"...just ask the guy that left his car running at Pizza Hut.

Fibber Mcgee

Has anyone ever been cited???


I can not understand employers who do not closed for the safety of their employees. Is money that important to them to risk employees safety. I think it is sad day in America when we can not stay home one day without having to go to store. We were all told days ago this was coming. Do people not listen? Personally I think we should ALL not go out and support these greedy business who do not have any more respect for their employees. There is nothing worth someone getting in bad accident because they are having a Big Mac attack. Maybe if this would happen these corporations would get the message. When they are paying out and not getting anything in the cash draws. That includes Wal-Mart who have seniors working there today. Sad just real sad. Sure hope they all get home safe. Everyone stay home and stay warm.


Right on!


Not all of us have that luxury. Too many residents count on us.


So I wonder if Liberty Tax service has their Statue of Liberty people waving today


I see police, fire and medical personal are cleared to go to work. I also noted that there is no mention of public utility workers, ie water power gas. you know the things required for heat and sanitation, AKA modern survival in cold climants. because every one has a well and fireplace (along with the wood to stoke it). I live in Huron county but I don't work there and at the end of my 10 hour shift I'm going home. and I am expected to be back tomorrow. the residents count on me and my coworkers to provide them with essential drinking water!


So IF you get pulled over, you tell them where you work and why you are on the road. No biggie. Not everyone gets a ticket or arrested. They cannot list every single job that is exempt from the level 3 restrictions.


So when is the level 3 over with


I would guess it will be in place till Tues. afternoon


The roads are passable. It's a little blowy and it's colder than a well digger's a$$.

How about I decide if I should be out?
Is that ok, Mommy?



Please think about others that you could affect by being out. You decide to go out and get in a wreck...guess what? There will be police, fire, ems, and others that will have to respond. Common sense says stay home!


Blaze. My initial response to you was going to be along the lines of asking you how the cold would contribute to an accident. But I've reconsidered. I went out on the porch 15 minutes ago to smoke some crack cocaine. It's wicked cold. I was dressed for it too. Pants, shirt, ascot. I was ready. I thought. As I get older, I'm wrong more frequently. This is a perfect illustration. If there was a level 4 available, I'd recommend it.

Blaze. You sound warm. What's your secret?


No secrets. Stay inside and try not to call 911 and I'll stay warm. Lol. And like Lawrence Taylor said...don't smoke crack!


That's why I've never had a problem with people who smoke crack. While they can be loud, they are still very considerate. Crack is Wack tho.


Re: "The driver of a vehicle found on the roadways during a Level 3 could be charged with 'misconduct at emergency.'"

So someone can be stopped by a cop, the officer gets out of his/her vehicle, freezes his/her tush off in order to inquire the reason why the driver is out?

Nanny state nonsense.


No they won't get out...lol..someone today was driving past a cop today in Willard & the cop turned his lights on & the guy stopped. Pulled up alongside him. (They were going in opposite directions) Told him they were getting ready to issue a Level 3 & to go home or he could be fined. I say if I get fined I will take that the damn ticket right to work so they can pay it!!