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Snowstorm slams into Colorado, Wyoming

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By The Associated Press
Sunday, May 11, 2014, 9:39 p.m.
 

DENVER — A powerful spring storm dropped more than a foot of sloppy, wet snow in parts of Colorado and Wyoming on Mother's Day, causing crashes and leading to road closures. Forecasters are warning that conditions could get worse as temperatures plummet overnight.

The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for most of northern Colorado and parts of southern Wyoming for all of Sunday and for Monday morning.

Forecasters were warning that strong thunderstorms and tornadoes could develop in Nebraska and Iowa. A tornado was reported in south-central Nebraska, the weather service said, but no significant damage was seen immediately. There was a moderate risk of severe weather in the area into Sunday night, the weather service said.

In Colorado, Department of Transportation officials said plunging temperatures and heavy, wet snow have caused icy conditions and forced several closures along Interstate 70 west of Denver on Sunday afternoon. Multiple accidents were reported on the mountain corridor, frustrating skiers and snowboarders eager to get a few more runs. Authorities closed parts of Interstate 25 because of accidents.

Snow amounts could vary greatly, but up to 15 inches could fall at higher elevations and 4 to 9 inches could fall at lower elevations, including Denver and cities along the Front Range.

“May snow certainly isn't unheard of here in Colorado, even down in the Denver metro area,” said David Barjenbruch, a weather service meteorologist in Boulder. “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.”

Barjenbruch said a foot of snow had fallen in the foothills of Larimer County northwest of Denver by Sunday morning, and workers along much of the Front Range can expect a “slushy, sloppy morning commute” on Monday.

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