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First Responders Prep for Winter Blast

First Responders Prep for Winter Blast

By Lindsey Theis. CREATED Feb 19, 2013

OMAHA, Neb. - Omaha was placed under a winter weather warning Tuesday night. While the roads were clear and no snow had fallen by Wednesday, the sights and sounds in the Omaha metro will be very different Thursday morning.

First responders are using the calm before the storm to get ready.

"The deputies try to limit the amount of time on the road, because the conditions are just as bad for us as they are everybody else," said Lt. Kevin Griger, of the Sarpy County Sheriff's Office.

Sarpy County deputies said wellness checks on the roads take up the majority of their calls during big snowfalls. Council Bluffs police began wellness checks Tuesday night as the temperatures dropped. Omaha police are warning drivers to stay off the road. If you have to drive, make sure your car can handle it, they said.

"People will be driving with just a little bit of a window that's scraped off," Omaha Police Officer James Shadewith said.

"If a driver is stuck and they are not going to be able to get out and maybe their cell phone's dead and they are waiting for someone to come. You can intermittently run your vehicle to stay warm, but if the snow builds up behind the tailpipe, the carbon monoxide will get in," Gringer said.

The storm system will hit Interstate 80 from one end of Nebraska to the next. The Nebraska Department of Roads will tackle the streets 30 crews at a time starting Thursday. They plan to work crews in two 12-hour shifts, monitoring as the snow grows.

Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle will update the city on preparations on Wednesday.

Stay with KMTV Action 3 News for the latest on the storm.