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Arkansas in a state of emergency whilst covered in a sheet of ice

Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders has declared a state of emergency as ice blows into many parts of the state, causing crashes.

ARKANSAS, USA — Icy weather in Arkansas has lead to Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders to declare a state of emergency through an executive action announced Tuesday, Jan. 31.

"On or about January 30, 2023, severe winter weather began in Arkansas and continues to cause dangers, hardships, and suffering throughout the state, which in turn, warrants this executive action," the announcement said.

According to the proclamation, because of the severe ice across the state's roads and highways, "commercial vehicles from accomplishing their designated responsibilities of hauling heavy equipment, oversized loads, transformers, necessary hardware, and other transmission and distribution equipment to line crews for the purpose of restoring power to the citizens of the State of Arkansas."

For that reason, the proclamation aims to temporarily exempt any motor carrier or driver operating a commercial motor vehicle providing emergency relief from the regulations such as safety rules relating to service hours, vehicle maintenance and inspection and driver qualifications.

The delcaration will last for the next 30 days for motor vehicles that carry "including but not limited to groceries, pharmacy items, medical equipment, goods, commodities, fuel, poultry, livestock, and feed."

Click here for a list of school closings.

On Monday, after overnight sleet and ice blanketed the area, Sanders activated National Guard teams to help Arkansas State Police teams in Fort Smith and Lowell. One of those teams had to dig an ambulance out of the ice and get it back on the road, as well as helping several motorists who needed support.

A batch of freezing drizzle produced a glaze of ice early Monday and continues into Tuesday. Click here for live updates and up-to-date forecasts in your area.

ARDOT has been responding to crashes across the area. To see current conditions, click here.

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