Dangerous Travel Conditions!

The high winds and heavy wet snow has caused considerable travel and power problems. I received this note from a family near Fairfield, regarding traveling and visibility.

“My Husband Pete and I Live near Fairfield, and The Visiblity is BAD!  We tried to Get to Fairfield, But The Roads and visibility was extremely Bad.  We Had to turn back Home about a Mile From our Farm, East of Fairfield.  We witnessed Two Accidents on Hwy 89.  The Winds are So Bad that We Could Barely See To Feed Our Cattle.  Please Let the Public know How dangerous the Storm Is.  Thank You!

The National Weather Service is operating with emergency generators and outages are widespread. Areas of Cascade, Fergus, Judith Basin, Pondera and Teton counties are reporting power outages. Heavy snow is breaking trees and some power poles.

It was a very tricky day for us to get on the air. We were with power at KRTV for a couple of hours and power was restored by about 4pm so it was a struggle to get the weather and news on the air but we pulled it off! Slushy roads are making travel difficult, please check the road report on the website before heading out to travel.

A winter storm warning remains in place overnight:

NORTHERN ROCKY MOUNTAIN FRONT-EASTERN GLACIER-HILL-CASCADE-
CHOUTEAU-TOOLE-LIBERTY-EASTERN PONDERA-
SOUTHERN ROCKY MOUNTAIN FRONT-EASTERN TETON-JUDITH BASIN-FERGUS-
MEAGHER-
INCLUDING THE FOLLOWING LOCATIONS...BROWNING...MARIAS PASS...
LOGAN PASS...CUT BANK...HAVRE...GREAT FALLS...KINGS HILL PASS...
BIG SANDY...FORT BENTON...SHELBY...CHESTER...CONRAD...CHOTEAU...
FAIRFIELD...STANFORD...LEWISTOWN...LEWISTOWN DIVIDE...
WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS
1101 AM MDT THU APR 29 2010

A WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 AM MDT FRIDAY FOR
MOST OF NORTH CENTRAL AND CENTRAL MONTANA.

* TIMING AND MAIN IMPACT: LIGHT TO MODERATE SNOW WILL CONTINUE TO
  FALL IN THE MOUNTAINS AND AT ELEVATIONS ABOVE 3500 FEET THROUGH
  TONIGHT. A MIX OF RAIN AND SNOW BELOW 3500 FEET WILL CHANGE OVER
  TO ALL SNOW THIS AFTERNOON AND INTO THIS EVENING.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS: 1 TO 3 FEET OF SNOW ARE EXPECTED IN THE
  MOUNTAINS THROUGH TONIGHT. LOWER ELEVATIONS WILL LIKELY RECEIVE
  A TOTAL OF 5 TO 9 INCHES...ALTHOUGH SOME SNOW MELT WILL OCCUR
  DURING THE INITIAL CHANGE OVER TO SNOW...DUE TO WARM GROUND
  TEMPERATURES.

* WINDS AND VISIBILITY: STRONG WEST TO NORTHWEST WINDS OF 25 TO 40
  MPH WITH GUSTS TO 55 MPH WILL CAUSE REDUCED VISIBILITIES BELOW
  ONE QUARTER MILE IN BLOWING SNOW. LOCAL WHITEOUT CONDITIONS ARE
  ALSO POSSIBLE WITH THE STRONGEST WINDS.

* SOME LOCATIONS AFFECTED INCLUDE: BROWNING...MARIAS PASS...LOGAN
  PASS...CUT BANK...HAVRE...GREAT FALLS...KINGS HILL PASS...BIG
  SANDY...FORT BENTON...SHELBY...CHESTER...CONRAD...CHOTEAU...
  FAIRFIELD...STANFORD...LEWISTOWN...LEWISTOWN DIVIDE...WHITE
  SULPHUR SPRINGS.

* OTHER IMPACTS: STEADY LIGHT TO MODERATE SNOW AND REDUCED
  VISIBILITIES WILL CREATE HAZARDOUS DRIVING CONDITIONS AND MAY
  IMPACT YOUNG LIVESTOCK. ALSO...THE WET HEAVY SNOW AND STRONG
  WINDS MAY ALSO CAUSE DISRUPTIONS IN TELEPHONE OR ELECTRICAL
  SERVICE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER STORM WARNING MEANS SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW ARE
EXPECTED OR OCCURRING ALONG WITH STRONG WINDS.  THIS WILL MAKE
TRAVEL VERY HAZARDOUS OR IMPOSSIBLE. ONLY TRAVEL IN AN EMERGENCY.
IF YOU MUST...KEEP AN EXTRA FLASHLIGHT...FOOD...AND WATER IN YOUR
VEHICLE IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY.
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