Outages, Rough Commute Greets Colorado As We Dig Out From The Bomb Cyclone
Wednesday's storm just about shut down the state as the bomb cyclone barreled through and headed to the Midwest. Shelters scrambled to accommodate increased demand — and the challenges of getting people experiencing homelessness from one place to another.
This morning? While the worst of the weather may be behind us, the aftermath is still going to cause a few problems:
- Xcel's outage map still shows scattered power loss across metro Denver
- Roads don't look great, with plenty of highway closures on the Eastern Plains and the Wyoming border
- Denver International Airport reports delays of 15 minute or less
- RTD would like you to know that it won't be an easy commute. Icy roads will slow up buses; rail lines will run with delays
- And Jeffco, Cherry Creek and Denver Public Schools are closed today, among many others...
Here's a visual of what #Colorado is waking up to after Wednesday's #BombCyclone. Roads in red are closed. You can check your specific route here: https://t.co/aagxv8eG1j #9news pic.twitter.com/v773dCNIjt— Amelia Rose Earhart (@Amelia__Earhart) March 14, 2019
Here's what we're seeing out there:
10:21 a.m.: That's all for today
Everyone has either hunkered in, or found a way to get where they needed to be today. No more updates will follow for the morning. If you see anything we need to know about, connect with us and let us know.
Oh, and don't forget to shovel those sidewalks.
9:33 a.m.: There's a lot to catch up on
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9:17 a.m.: Yes, this was weird
Peter Goble, a climatologist at Colorado State University, told Ryan Warner on Colorado Matters that, "the pressure drop for Colorado is, again, unprecedented. But we had something similar happen in March of 1973."
9:10 a.m.: Stuck cars are making it harder to dig out
Here's CDOT spokesperson Tamara Rollison: "Right now, CDOT's in full deployment. We're using all of our resources to clear the road as quickly as we can but it's going to be a while. Our big challenge right now is we have a lot of vehicles and trucks that are stuck along the I-25 corridor."
— Natalia V. Navarro
8:53 a.m.: Xcel is working to restore power, but it's pretty tough out there
Hollie Velasquez-Horvath, Xcel Spokeswoman: "If you can imagine 80 to 90 mile per hour winds, we had poles that had snapped, trees that had flipped over and crashed into electric lines. We had feeders that went out because of the wetness and thickness of the snow, so it was a whole combination of different things that impacted the outages."
She also said an additional 300 workers have come in from out of state to help restore electricity. At the high point, about 350,000 people were without power. Right now, about 85,000 homes are still without power.
8:23 a.m.: Things are better at the airport, but not great
DIA has reopened several runways after Wednesday's storm, meaning flights will likely be able to take off and land today. Four of six runways reopened overnight after crews cleared drifted snow. The airport said about 675 flights have been canceled today and that no flights will depart before noon.
DIA spokesperson Emily Williams said crews said “were out all night making sure that those runways are clear and operational.” She added that, “Pena [Boulevard] is open and clear, but it is icy and snowpacked.”
RTD's A Line is on a delayed schedule. Officials urge people to check their flight status before traveling to the airport.
— Andrew Villegas
7:57 a.m.: No rest for the wicked
The city of Denver reminds you that you have 24 hours to clear your sidewalk of snow. Here are the rules around snow removal.
7:18 a.m.: We're all officially digging out now
The effects of the bomb cyclone that left much of the Denver metro area at a standstill are still felt this morning. The Colorado National Guard said it rescued 36 stranded motorists overnight. Xcel energy said more than 80,000 customers in the metro area remain without power this morning.
— Andrew Villegas
6:51 a.m.: Colorado Springs is closed today (city offices)
City offices and facilities are closed. The city asks that non-essential personnel not to report to work. All emergency responders and essential personnel are required to report to work on time.
6:34 a.m.: Think twice about heading out this morning
As we mentioned, the roads aren't great. Weld County reports that all their plows are out, but abandoned and/or stuck vehicles have made work a challenge. Road in the county are snow-packed and icy with snow drifts. Local, secondary, & rural roads impassable. Meanwhile, closer to Denver, Adams County tells commuters bound for the airport to avoid the back roads to get there. They say you WILL get stuck. Meanwhile, in Elbert County...
Emergency operations occurred throughout the night. Hundreds have been rescued and are in shelters. Many more still stranded and we are still trying to reach. All County roads, REMAIN CLOSED. ALL 24, 86, and I-70 REMAIN CLOSED. Stay off the roads. Please. #elcoblizzard— Elbert County OEM (@ElbertCountyOEM) March 14, 2019
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