Winter storm keeps first responders working around the clock

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GRAYSON CO. & BRYAN CO. -- First responders in Texoma have been working nonstop since Thursday clearing accident scenes and helping stranded motorists.

Sherman Police say they have worked at least six injury accidents since Friday, 14 non-injury accidents and more than 220 motorist assists for drivers stuck in ice or vehicles that slid off the roads.

Denison Police say they have responded to about 16 accidents and 88 stranded motorists, and OHP Troop E and Troop F have worked nearly 80 accidents and more than 130 motorist assists.

Jack-knifed semis, drivers who have slid off roadways and collisions, hundreds of calls like these have kept first responders busy since Thursday.

"Law enforcement, EMS and Fire, it really was a team effort and everyone did a great job, regardless of what it may have looked like to the public. I guarantee you they were doing their best," Lt. Scott Hampton said.

Lt. Scott Hampton with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol says troopers have risked their owns lives to help others out on the roads.

"When most people would like to be sitting at home in their pajamas and drinking hot coco, these guys are coming out on their days off and putting themselves in a lot of dangerous situations," Lt. Hampton said.

Sgt. D.M. Hampton, with Sherman Police, says their officers have also gone the extra mile.

"They did work a lot of hours this weekend trying to keep it safe out here and helping people best they could and try to keep the roads clear," Sgt. Hampton said.

However, it was not just the officers on the frontlines who worked 24-7. He says dispatchers also worked hard behind the scenes in what was at times controlled chaos.

"All those calls to service, they probably answered anywhere from four to five times that many calls if not more, so the dispatchers really did, tip your hats off to them because they did an excellent job," Sgt. Hampton said.

Both Sgt. Hampton and Lt. Hampton say first responders on both sides of the Red River were prepared.

"Our local emergency management (worked) well with the state EOC and I can't say well enough how good they did on getting things set up for this," Lt. Hampton said.

"We don't get excited about these events, but we do plan for them and execute that plan," Sgt. Hampton said.

They say they are proud of the men and women they work with and hope their communities are too.

"The people that do the kind of job that we do. They do it for a reason, they do it for service," Sgt. Hampton said.

"It gives you a good feeling to know that you're surrounded by people who will do what it takes to get the job done," Lt. Hampton said.