A “Historic” winter storm due to the amount of snow it is leaving, it hits the Rocky Mountain and northern Great Plains states this Sunday, causing road and airport closures and affecting about 30 million people in the United States.
In Colorado and Wyoming, the two states that suffer the greatest impact from the snowfall, it is expected about 25 centimeters of snow accumulated at the end of the day in urban areas and double that in areas near mountains, with the possibility of an unprecedented 65-centimeter mark in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
As the hours go by, the low-pressure system from the west will continue to collide east of the Rocky Mountains with the high-pressure, moist air system from the south (Gulf of Mexico), thus the storm “will intensify and expand”, said in a statement today the National Meteorological Service (NWS).
So while in Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, and South Dakota “Heavy snow will accumulate and winds will increase”, in eastern Colorado and Nebraska, and in sectors of Kansas and Oklahoma among other areas, electrical storms, hailstorms and tornadoes could be seen, two of which already occurred this Saturday in Texas.
Colorado and Wyoming closed the highway Interstate 25 (that crosses those states from north to south), as well as the Interstate 70 (Colorado) and interstates 80 and 90 (Wyoming), which are oriented from east to west.
During the day there will be temporary reopening in certain sectors of the road to prevent motorists from being stranded on those routes.
At the same time, Denver International Airport, the largest air terminal in the region, canceled about 2,000 flights, not because of the difficulties to continue with operations (the airport is prepared to respond to these storms), but because of the difficulties of the personnel (including pilots) to get to the place.
When this afternoon the “dangerous” storm At its fullest extent, it will span the area between the Mississippi River to the east and the Rocky Mountains to the west, putting “lives and property” at risk, according to Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather’s chief meteorologist.
Although no fatalities have been mourned so far, the storm is expected to cause huge losses due to livestock deaths in Wyoming, and destroy entire crops in eastern Colorado and parts of Kansas and Nebraska.
“The storm took a while to arrive yesterday Saturday, and although it arrived a little later than expected, today it is much more intense and he’s going to be with us longer than we originally expected, “said Shoshana Lew, executive director of the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), in prepared statements sent to Efe.
“We ask motorists not to be careless: conditions today are worse than yesterday“including poor visibility, frozen roads and accumulation of gummy snow, he added.
According to the PowerOutage.us site, due to falling trees and other circumstances created by snow, about 33,000 people in northern Colorado and another 2,250 people in southern Wyoming are without power this Sunday.
However, apparently the worst has not yet come. “Things will get worse tonight when it gets dark, the cold comes, and a lot more snow sticks to the roads, “said John Lorme, CDOT’s chief operating officer.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.