12-hour shifts until all residential streets are passable.
"It's been a mess," said Danny Rotert, spokesman for Mayor Sly James, whose own street in Columbus Park had not been plowed.
Thursday was no picnic for Kansas City's buses, either. At one point late Thursday morning, about 60 of the metro's 180 buses were stuck in the snow, and service was suspended at 1 p.m. By late Thursday afternoon, 20 buses were still stuck, and some had sustained property damage. But the system is expected to resume normal service today, spokeswoman Cindy Baker said.
Road conditions deteriorated quickly Thursday morning and remained hazardous into the night. Highway departments reported several closures throughout the day.
Kansas City police took dozens of reports of stranded motorists throughout the city.
"We've got people stuck and stranded all over the place," said L.D. Clark, a police dispatch supervisor. "Our officers are getting stuck. Everybody's getting stuck."
Tow trucks couldn't keep up.
"We are swamped. Just swamped," said Nancy Corak, who with her husband, Chad, owns Budget Towing in Kansas City. "This is crazy. Some of our trucks can't even get to the people, and people are even getting stuck when the snow plows go by them."
Johnson County Med-Act ambulance service reported a 70 percent increase in the number of calls, trying to get to car crashes and falls and to help people who couldn't get to the hospital on their own because of the roads.
Some ambulance crews told dispatchers they had to get out and walk to patients.
KCI was shut down from 10 a.m. throughout the day. More than 80 flights were canceled and about half that many were canceled for today.
Sixteen flights got out on time before 9 a.m. Thursday before snow overwhelmed runway crews. Easterly winds limited which runways the airport could use, making it harder to keep ahead of the snow, spokesman Joe McBride said.
The storm was severe enough to force many medical facilities to close.
Children's Mercy Hospital closed all its urgent care centers, and outpatient clinics and same-day surgeries were limited to patients with confirmed appointments.
The hospital rented close to 500 hotel rooms near Hospital Hill so essential staff in emergency services could stay at work.
Today, all Children's Mercy outpatient clinics and the College Boulevard Urgent Care center will be closed, but the same-day surgery center, Children's Mercy Northland and the East Urgent Care center will be open.
The Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center announced Thursday evening that all of its locations would remain closed again today.
The University of Kansas Medical Center will be closed today but the University of Kansas Hospital and the University of Kansas Physicians will be open.
Several services of St. Luke's Health System also are closed today. Call to be sure.
The plan was for business as usual at Shawnee Mission Medical Center and Truman Medical Centers.
The offices of cancer specialists at St. Luke's on the Plaza, St. Luke's South and St. Luke's East will all be closed today. The status of other hospital programs that closed Thursday was unclear.
Many other businesses and government offices tried to help ease the trouble on the roads by closing offices Thursday.
Schools were closed, with most districts announcing their decision Wednesday evening in advance of the storm. Many districts Thursday night were already canceling classes for today.
Sporting events and music performances were impacted. The University of Missouri-Kansas City women's basketball game scheduled for Thursday night was postponed until 1 p.m. today.
Thursday's Harriman-Jewell performance by Cantus at the Folly Theater was postponed to a date still to be determined.
The Russian National Orchestra's performance at the Lied Center in Lawrence was canceled.
The news wasn't all bad. Crime, for the most part, took the day off.
Kansas City robbery detectives caught up on paperwork with few new calls from patrol officers, Sgt. Ron Legg said.
"They are dealing with stranded motorists and accidents and that's about it," Legg said.
The Star's Robert A. Cronkleton, Matt Campbell, Lynn Horsley, Alan Bavley, Glenn E. Rice, Mara Rose Williams, Judy Thomas, Karen Dillon, Tony Rizzo, Glenn E. Rice, Christine Vendel and Eric Adler contributed to this report.
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