Gov. Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency in Missouri in response to severe winter weather that began early this morning, bringing hazardous travel and the possibility of power outages. The weather system has involved a mix of snow, sleet and ice throughout the state, with forecasts of 10 inches or more of snow in some parts of the state and a wintry mix across many other regions of Missouri.
The State Emergency Operations Center has been actively monitoring the storm system since yesterday. Gov. Nixon has been receiving updates from his emergency management team, including senior officials from the Missouri Department of Public Safety, Missouri National Guard, Missouri Highway Patrol and State Emergency Management Agency to assess the current weather situation and review the latest forecasts.
Gov. Nixon has also activated the Missouri State Emergency Operations Plan, which allows state agencies to coordinate directly with local jurisdictions to provide emergency services.
Citizens who need disaster information, shelter information, and referrals are urged to call 211. The 211 Service is now available for most areas of Missouri. In areas where the 211 service is not operational, citizens may call 800-427-4626.
The governor issued the declaration from his office in the Capitol, where he was one of only a few people actually in the building. The House and Senate canceled their sessions Thursday, and most of their offices were closed.
A lone tour guide staffed a Capitol reception desk, but no one had braved the snow to visit the Capitol.