Okla. officials learn lessons from ice storm

ENID, Okla. (AP) - Emergency officials in north-central Oklahoma have streamlined communications, improved utility outage response and better prepared themselves for natural disasters after 1 of the worst ice storms in state history crippled the region a decade ago.

A storm system dumped successive rounds of freezing rain on the state Jan. 30, 2002, coating virtually everything from Elk City to Pawhuska with ice.

Emergency Management Director Mike Honigsberg says communications and a loss of power were the biggest obstacles in coordinating response efforts.

Honigsberg told the Enid News and Eagle (http://bit.ly/xy4Bbo) that officials learned their weaknesses were in their water fields, and have since installed generators to ensure no shortages occur again.

The storm knocked out electricity to 255,000 customers and killed at least six people.

Information from: Enid News & Eagle, http://www.enidnews.com

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