By ERIC SCHAADT
Thanks to slushy and slippery roads, Hancock County and four nearby counties remained under a Level 1 weather alert Thursday.
Henry, Seneca, Putnam and Wood counties also were under a Level 1 alert. The alert warns motorists that roadways are hazardous and suggests they drive with extreme caution.
Only minor traffic mishaps were reported by area law enforcement agencies.
et,” a relieved Putnam County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said Thursday night. “We’ll take it.”
A Level 1 alert was lifted at 12:30 p.m. Thursday in Wyandot County.
“The roads are in pretty good shape,” a Wyandot County Sheriff’s Office dispatcher said Thursday night.
Conditions also improved on Interstate 75 in the Findlay vicinity, according to the Findlay post of the State Highway Patrol.
But interstate entrance and exit ramps were still being cleared Thursday by the Ohio Department of Transportation.
After a three-day layoff caused by snow, ice and subzero temperatures, most schools in the area reopened Thursday.
Some did not: McComb, North Baltimore, Fostoria and Elmwood remained closed Thursday.
Fostoria hoped to reopen today, and Elmwood, McComb and North Baltimore planned to reopen after a two-hour delay today.
Arlington, Cory-Rawson, Liberty-Benton, Patrick Henry and Upper Sandusky also planned two-hour delays today.
Findlay city workers were contending Thursday with two waterline breaks caused by this week’s cold weather.
One break was on Sixth Street just west of Emory Adams Park, which affected eight to 10 residences, and another was in the 200 block of Lima Avenue, which affected 10 to 12 residences, according to Jeff Betts, maintenance supervisor for the Water Distribution Department.
Both were reported about 6 a.m. Thursday. The roads remained open with lane restrictions. Motorists should avoid the areas while repairs are being done.
Another water main break was repaired Wednesday night on Fishlock Avenue, Betts said.
After low temperatures set Findlay records on Monday and Tuesday, Thursday’s high temperature reached the upper 20s.
Chris Long, Hancock County engineer, said salt and warmer weather helped improve road conditions Thursday. Seventeen Hancock County snowplows were busy on the roads until 5 p.m.
Temperatures are expected to rise into the 40s today, and county officials will assess what road work is needed.
“We’ll play it by ear and see what happens,” Long said Thursday night.
The National Weather Service is predicting high temperatures will be 40 or above for the next four days.
Today’s high is expected to be 41, the weather service said. There may be snow and freezing drizzle in the morning, rain and snow in the afternoon, and rain in the evening, the weather service said.
Between a quarter-inch and a half-inch of rain is possible tonight, the weather service said.
On Saturday, a high near 46 and up to a quarter-inch of rain is possible, the weather service said, but there is a chance of snow Saturday night.
A high of 40 degrees on Sunday and 44 on Monday are predicted.
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