Colorado, Wyoming Snowstorms Make Dangerous CommuteBy: Lacy Langley - May 12, 2014
Parts of Colorado and Wyoming were blanketed in over a foot of wet, slushy snow on Sunday, proving that winter just isn’t quite ready to give up yet.
The weather service warned that the snow would be heavy and wet enough to snap tree branches and power lines, and gusting winds could make driving treacherous Sunday and will still be dangerous for the Monday commute.
“May snow certainly isn’t unheard of here in Colorado, even down in the Denver metro area,” said David Barjenbruch, who is a weather service meteorologist in Boulder, Colorado. “If we see the total accumulations that we are anticipating from this storm, we are certainly going to see a top 10 May snow event for the Denver metro area.”
Icy conditions had several parts of I-70 west of Denver on Sunday afternoon, clogging up the passageway for skiers and snowboarders trying to make their way down from the mountains, and parts of I-25 were also closed due to several accidents.
This late winter storm was reportedly caused by a low-pressure system moving east colliding with a cold air mass from the north. The conditions were also expected to spark strong thunderstorms capable of spawning tornadoes for Nebraska and Iowa on Sunday, but while a tornado was spotted on the ground in south-central Nebraska, no serious damage or injuries have yet been reported.
The Denver Airport started preparing early for the storm, according to Julie Smith, a spokeswoman for Denver International Airport. She said crews treated runways with deicer early on in anticipation of dropping temperatures Sunday night.
“At this point we are seeing some delays with our airlines while they are getting their deicing operations up and running, and we do expect the airlines to be fully deicing in the morning,” she said.
The city of Denver was expected to deploy 70 snowplows to help Monday’s commute, Whether or not it was enough to prevent accidents and slow-downs remains to be seen.
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