Snowfall gridlocked Lexington traffic Thursday afternoon, causing more than 90 crashes throughout the city and making it difficult for roads to be cleared, and slick roads were expected for morning rush hour Friday.
Thursday's snowfall, which the National Weather Service predicted Wednesday would begin accumulating in Lexington around 11 a.m., actually began with flurries around 1 p.m.
Snow started accumulating on the ground and on roadways around 4 p.m. as people were leaving work.
The number of cars on the city's main roads made it slow going for plows and salt trucks, said Sam Williams, director of the city's streets, roads and forestry division.
Some motorists reported being stuck in traffic for hours.
Slick roads likely played a role in 95 collisions reported to Lexington police between 4 and 9 p.m.
Just one of those crashes involved injuries, and the injuries were minor, Lt. Scott Blakely said.
Blakely said traffic was worst on Interstates 75 and 64, and many crashes were reported on the northern sections of New Circle Road.
The northern half of Kentucky, including Fayette and Jefferson counties, was expected to receive 3 to 4 inches, Thursday, according to John Gordon, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Louisville.
Forecasters had said the southern part of the state, including Warren and Barren counties, could get 1 to 3 inches.
Temperatures were expected to be in the low to mid-teens overnight, with 10 to 15 mph winds making temperatures feel closer to 0 to 5 degrees by daybreak Friday, Gordon said.
The moisture and cold could create problems on bridges, highway ramps and side streets, Gordon said.
The Bluegrass region has gotten much more snow than usual this winter. Including Thursday's snowfall, Lexington has seen around 20 inches of snow since Dec. 1, according to National Weather Service statistics — about 14 inches more than usual. The region normally sees an average of 6.1 in December and January; 7.4 inches fell during that time last year.
Central Kentucky averages 12 to 14 inches each year, according to the weather service.