1st winter storm of season rolling through Montana, Dakotas

Nov 10, 2022, 10:55 AM | Updated: 4:33 pm
A woman crosses Broadway Avenue as snow continues to fall during a blizzard in Bismarck, N.D. on Th...

A woman crosses Broadway Avenue as snow continues to fall during a blizzard in Bismarck, N.D. on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2022. The first winter storm of the season to blast off from the Rockies is unloading its energy primarily in North Dakota. (Mike McCleary/The Bismarck Tribune via AP)

(Mike McCleary/The Bismarck Tribune via AP)

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — The first winter storm of the season to blast off from the Rockies was unloading its energy Thursday primarily in North Dakota, where it could dump up to 18 inches (46 centimeters) of snow and kick up winds as high as 50 mph (80 kph), the National Weather Service said.

The system started with a round of freezing drizzle that made driving tricky in the Dakotas. It led to a chain reaction crash that totaled a state trooper’s vehicle and closed Interstate 94 in eastern North Dakota for several hours Wednesday night and shut down I-29 in eastern North Dakota for a few hours on Thursday morning.

Travel was hazardous throughout southern North Dakota by Thursday afternoon, when I-94 was closed from Dickinson in the west to Jamestown in the east, a distance of about 200 miles (322 kilometers). The move was due to zero visibility, blowing snow and icy conditions. Officials also warned of impassable secondary roads.

“Vehicles may become stranded and emergency responders may not be able to reach you safely,” the North Dakota Department of Transportation said in a release.

The state’s capital city, Bismarck, was at a standstill with numerous closings and cancellations. A scheduled appearance by comedian Bert Kreischer was postponed to March and Kreischer’s tour bus got stuck in the snow before reaching the city. About a dozen people responded to a rescue plea by Kreischer on social media, The Bismarck Tribune reported.

Storm warnings were issued Thursday for western Montana, for southwestern through northeastern South Dakota and for northwestern Minnesota, but meteorologist Carl Jones said North Dakota was getting the worst of it.

“It’s mainly driven by heavy snow amounts,” said Jones, who works out of the weather service’s eastern North Dakota office in Grand Forks. “We are talking 1- to 2-inch per hour rates over a pretty wide swath.”

A blizzard was hammering central North Dakota. Jacqueline Swiftbird, a cashier at the Flying J truck stop in Mandan, Bismarck’s neighboring city, said a semi-trailer that had been hauling other vehicles was stuck outside her window. She said she was the only cashier who could make it into work and that she picked up employees for restaurants and other shops in the travel center.

“It is extremely, extremely hazardous out there,” Swiftbird said. “I am really busy being the only cashier but I would rather not have any other employees try to make it here in these conditions.”

Snow totals by late afternoon Thursday included about 13 inches (33 centimeters) in Bismarck, 16 inches (41 centimeters) in New Salem, 14 inches (36 centimeters) in Steele, 10 inches (25 centimeters) in Harvey and 9 inches (23 centimeters) in Williston.

The crash involving the North Dakota trooper’s vehicle happened about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday on I-94 near Jamestown, the state Highway Patrol said. The officer had gotten out of a vehicle after seeing a semi jackknife on the road and the patrol car was struck by a passenger car. The trooper was not injured.

There were seven additional crashes at the same location, all in quick succession. Several people were transported to a Jamestown hospital with injuries, including one person with a broken leg, the patrol said.

Jones, the meteorologist, said the first storm is always a learning or relearning experience.

“We kind of lean on that. That first storm, if you will, of the season, we really try to get the message out to be extra cautious,” Jones said. “We’re really trying to remind people to practice good safe driving habits and get their winter survival kits into their vehicles.”

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

A migrant from Michoacan, Mexico, uses the CBPOne app Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023, in Tijuana, Mexico. A...
Associated Press

Online system to seek asylum in US is quickly overwhelmed

TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) — Hours before sunrise, migrants at one of Mexico’s largest shelters wake up and go online, hoping to secure an appointment to try to seek asylum in the U.S. The daily ritual resembles a race for concert tickets when online sales begin for a major act, as about 100 people glide their […]
7 hours ago
Associated Press

Challenge for Tunisian democracy: Getting voters to show up

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia was once the Arab world’s hope for a new era of democracy. Now it’s in the midst of an election that’s more of an embarrassment than a model. Barely 11% of voters turned out in the first round of parliamentary elections last month, boycotted by opposition Islamists and ignored by […]
7 hours ago
Associated Press

Philippines probes labor abuses in Kuwait after new killing

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine government said Saturday it will take steps to assess and prevent abuses including rape and maltreatment of Filipino workers in Kuwait, after a housemaid was killed and dumped in a desert in the oil-rich emirate. The remains of Jullebee Ranara were flown home Friday night from Kuwait, where the […]
7 hours ago
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni departs Algiers after a two day official visit in Algeria, Mo...
Associated Press

Italy, Libya sign $8B gas deal as PM Meloni visits Tripoli

CAIRO (AP) — Italy’s prime minister held talks in Libya on Saturday with officials from the country’s west-based government focusing on energy and migration, top issues for Italy and the European Union. During the visit, the two countries’ oil companies signed a gas deal worth $8 billion — the largest single investment in Libya’s energy […]
7 hours ago
FILE  - A view of a Flybe flight departing from Manchester Airport, Manchester, England, Jan. 13, 2...
Associated Press

Flights canceled as UK airline Flybe sinks into bankruptcy

LONDON (AP) — Struggling U.K. regional airline Flybe collapsed for the second time in three years Saturday, putting jobs on the line and leaving passengers stranded. The airline initially slumped into bankruptcy in March 2020, shedding 2,400 jobs, as coronavirus restrictions decimated the travel industry. It relaunched in April last year, flying many of the […]
7 hours ago
CORRECTS THE PHOTOGRAPHER'S NAME TO KWIYEON HA - Staff of Kyodo Senpaku Co. holds canned whale meat...
Associated Press

Japan firm opens whale meat vending machines to push sales

YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — A Japanese whaling operator, after struggling for years to promote its products amid protests from conservationists, has found a new way to cultivate clientele and bolster sales: whale meat vending machines. The Kujira (Whale) Store, an unmanned outlet that recently opened in the port town of Yokohama near Tokyo, houses three […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Fiesta Bowl Foundation

Celebrate 50 years of Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade magic!

Since its first production in the early 1970s, the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe has been a staple of Valley traditions, bringing family fun and excitement to downtown Phoenix.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Quantum Fiber

Stream 4K and more with powerful, high-speed fiber internet

Picking which streaming services to subscribe to are difficult choices, and there is no room for internet that cannot handle increased demands.
1st winter storm of season rolling through Montana, Dakotas