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The National Weather Service’s Midland/Odessa station predicts 2 to 3 inches of snowfall in Eddy County on Thursday.
Overnight snowfall caused school delays.
Carlsbad Schools announced a complete closure of all classes for Feb. 18 due to inclement weather.
Loving Schools will not be holding in-person classes today due to the weather conditions. Loving schools alerted students that online lessons were still available for students to complete as needed.
Artesia Public Schools are closed Feb. 18 due to inclement weather. John Ross Null, superintendent said there would be no online classes.
This information will be updated throughout the day.
Other closures, delays
Eddy County Administrative offices are on a 2-hour delay.
“The Eddy County Detention Center, Facility Staff, Sheriff Deputies and Road Crews will remain on duty as scheduled,” a Facebook post read.
Snowfall in Carlsbad overnight
Scott Kleebauer, meteorologist with the National Weather Service (NWS), in Midland, Texas said the snowfall started in the Guadalupe Mountains and moved into the Carlsbad area between 1 and 4 a.m.
He said two to four inches of snow fell in the Carlsbad area as of 10:30 a.m. Thursday and the Queen area west of Carlsbad reported five inches of snow.
Kleebauer said a storm system moving through southeast New Mexico and west Texas had enough lift to create moderate snowfall.
A winter weather advisory was posted for Eddy County until 2 p.m. Thursday. Kleebauer said NWS might let it expire.
NWS Chaves County Skywarn Coordinator Jim Tucker said snow wasn’t falling in Roswell Thursday around 5 a.m.
“Roads were passable,” he said during a work commute from Roswell to Artesia.
Tucker said his home in Roswell received more than three inches from a storm earlier this week.
“No new accumulations today,” he said.
Kleebauer said skies would clear overnight Thursday.
“No precipitation is in the forecast after this one,” he said of the departing snow.
Thursday’s high was forecast at 31 degrees Fahrenheit, read the NWS forecast for Carlsbad.
Friday’s high was predicted for 51 degrees Fahrenheit and Saturday’s high was forecast for 64 degrees Fahrenheit, per the NWS.
“Relief is on the horizon,” Kleebauer said.
No planned power outages
Eddy County experienced planned power outages throughout this week as Xcel Energy and other providers conserved power to protect the regional electric grid and maintain reliability.
More than 8,000 outages were reported in Eddy County Tuesday and Xcel spokesperson Wes Reeves said the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) cancelled energy emergency alerts on Thursday.
“For the present time there are no energy emergency alerts that are active,” he said.
Reeves said SPP remained cautious on Thursday.
“Our regional system is meeting the demand but is going to remain in conservative operations. We would like customers to continue conserving the best they can for the next couple of days,” he said.
Reeves said conservative operations means SPP will not idle any of the plants to perform maintenance that isn’t critical right now, and they won’t take any transmission lines out of service for routine maintenance either.
Crews out during snowfall
New Mexico Department of Transportation (DOT) reported difficult driving across portions of southeast New Mexico Thursday, said Manon Arnett, DOT spokesperson.
“Crew are working round the clock plowing and salting as needed,” she said. “Some roads like New Mexico (State Road)128 west of Jal is reported as difficult driving conditions. Motorists are asked to reduce speed and proceed with caution.”
DOT said Carlsbad motorists experienced difficult driving conditions Thursday. People were urged to proceed with caution on United States Highway’s 285, 62/180 and New Mexico State Road 31.
Fair driving conditions were reported by DOT on United States Highway 285 from Artesia to Vaughn. Fair driving conditions were noted on United States Highway 82 from Artesia to Mayhill.
DOT said difficulties were reported on United States Highway 70 west of Roswell from mile marker 300 to mile marker 328.
Eddy County Public Works Director Jason Burns said crews started salting and blading county roads at daylight on Thursday.
Officers respond to accidents
New Mexico State Police said three accidents were reported in southeast New Mexico from Wednesday afternoon to Thursday morning.
Spokesperson Dusty Francisco an accident was reported Wednesday at 1:46 p.m. on U.S. 285 near Carlsbad.
State police responded to another accident on U.S. 285 Thursday morning at mile marker 39. Francisco said there was one injury.
Another accident was reported on United States Highway 380 in Chaves County, Francisco said.
Eddy County Sheriff’s responded to nearly a dozen injury and non-injury accidents Thursday from 5:17 a.m. to 7:38 a.m., read dispatch logs from the Regional Emergency Dispatch Authority (REDA).
Capt. Matt Hutchinson, Eddy County Sheriff’s spokesperson, said deputies didn’t respond to serious accidents.
Carlsbad police didn’t respond to any serious accidents Thursday morning, said Lt. Jaime Balencia, department spokesperson.
“Streets are slushy and a little slick,” he said of Carlsbad streets around 12 p.m.
“If you do not have to drive stay home. The roads are absolutely terrible and not getting any better. We are out in force but still spread extremely thin. Many roads are snow-packed with ice underneath,” Eddy County Sheriff Mark Cage said in a Facebook post.
Jessica Onsurez can be reached at email@example.com, @JussGREAT on Twitter at by phone at 575-628-5531.