Much of Northwest Indiana is under a County Travel "Watch" Advisory as severe winds and blowing snow continue to wreak havoc on Michiana roads.
Fulton County was the first in our viewing area to declare a "Warning" Level Travel Advisory in effect until 5 p.m. Sunday. Travel is restricted to emergency management workers only and essential emergency travel by members of the public.
Most other counties, including St. Joseph County, are currently under a "Watch" advisory, which means that it is recommended that cars stay off the road and only essential travel take place, "such as to and from work or in emergency situations," according to the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.
Follow this Indiana Dept. of Homeland Security link for a full list of the most up to date travel advisories by county.
Elkhart County Sheriff's Dept. is asking residents to stay home Saturday evening unless they need to go to work.
"The crews started at 4:00 am this morning and we are running out of man hours," said an Elkhart Co. release this evening. "Sleep and rest is needed. The wind and snow is not currently allowing us to keep roads open for a long time."
On the Michigan side, The Van Buren County Sheriff's Office is asking people to stay home or at a location where they can remain off the roadways for the night.
Even though formal travel bans are not in place for most residents, INDOT is asking drivers to stay off the roads if at all possible.
"We're stressing to folks that you don't need a warning to stay off of the roads," said INDOT Northwest Spokesman Matt Deitchley. "We're giving you our own warning and that's that you really shouldn't be on the roads at this time."
INDOT says blowing snow is hindering the progress of plows, which have been working around the clock.
"A lot of folks say that this road hasn't been plowed but it may very well be the case that the plow went through half an hour or 45 minutes ago but the winds are so bad that it will blow over snow over the top of these roads," Deitchley said. "It's almost impossible to stay ahead of it."