High winds and blowing snow across much of the state means motorists are advised to stay home and avoid travel until this storm ends.
The Missouri Department of Transportation has issued a "no travel advisory" for the duration of this storm, which is expected to continue through the day on Sunday, Jan. 5 and through the night.
"For your safety and the safety of our crews, we ask everyone to avoid travel once this storm begins, unless it is an emergency," said Ed Hassinger, MoDOT Chief Engineer. "Strong winds are blowing the snow around, and it's creating a whiteout effect that makes it very difficult to see and makes travel extremely hazardous."
The snowfall, coupled with 35-40 mph wind gusts, can create drifts that will seriously challenge even four-wheel drive vehicles.
"With the snow, high winds, and extreme cold, it's going to be a challenge for MoDOT to clear our state routes," said Hassinger. "If there are no other vehicles on the roadways, we have a much better chance of making progress so traffic can get moving again."
When temperatures dip this low, getting stranded on the side of the road can be very dangerous. Before you head out, equip your vehicle with an emergency kit and let a friend or family member know when and where you're traveling. If you do become stranded, stay with your vehicle and call 911.
Be aware that emergency responders may have difficulty reaching you.
One of the best ways to prepare for winter travel is to check MoDOT's Traveler Information Map, located at www.modot.org. The map offers real-time views of road conditions for Missouri's interstates and major highways.
For smartphone and tablet users, MoDOT's Traveler Information App brings the same information to your mobile devices. Users can select road condition and work zone options from the map's legend, and view the same cameras and message boards found on desktop version of the map. The app is available for free at the iPhone App Store and Android Marketplace.
Travelers can also pick up the phone and call MoDOT's toll-free customer service center at 888-ASK-MODOT (888-275-6636). Customer service representatives are available to give road conditions updates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.