Snowstorm Blasts Wyoming

 
by K2 Newsdesk, info@k2tv.com 
     Taylor Viydo, tviydo@k2tv.com
 
UPDATE 6:45 pm:
 
Interstate 25 is closed between Wheatland and Douglas. "No unnecessary travel" restrictions remain in effect for other parts of I-25, including from Casper to Douglas. 
 
Snow is continuing to fall in Casper and is beginning to pick up in Cheyenne, where snow totals have grown to almost 8 inches. 
 
Winter storm warnings are no longer in effect for Carbon County and parts of Albany County.

Original Story:
For the second straight day, a strong spring storm dumped snow across Wyoming on Tuesday, prompting schools closures and some highways to shut down. As of Tuesday afternoon, all but the northwest part of the state was under some kind of a storm advisory.  
 
Some parts of the state had received on average a foot of snow on Tuesday afternoon. As of 3 p.m., Cheyenne had received up 6 inches of snow, Casper saw between 6 to 14 inches, while Riverton had received a foot of snow. Lander was hit especially hard by the storm, with some parts receiving between one to two feet of snow. A reported 28.5 inches of snow had been recorded near Sinks Canyon. 
 
The storm was expected to continue for much of the state through Wednesday morning. Forecasters expected snowfall in Cheyenne to begin picking up Tuesday evening.

K2's Michael Sevren reports from Lander, which received more than a foot of snow:



School Closures
 
Nearly a dozen school districts canceled classes on Tuesday because of the storm. Districts in Fremont, Hot Springs, Campbell, Goshen called of classes for the day. 
 
Schools in Cheyenne opened as scheduled but closed early as the snowstorm expected to gain steam. At 2:20 p.m., Laramie County School District 1 announced that all school functions scheduled for the afternoon were canceled.
 
Despite up to a foot of snow in some parts of Casper, the Natrona County School District remained open. Buses in the Casper area ran on a normal schedule, but students in Midwest were on a two-hour delay. 

K2's John Shrable spoke with several parents, and even one teacher, who were upset with the decision:


Note: Sid Webb of the Natrona County School District tells K2 that before a decision was made to keep schools open, school officials made several calls and researched the logistics.

Highways 
 
As of Tuesday afternoon, most of the state's interstate highways were open, but WYDOT was warning of continual hazardous travel conditions in most of the state. "No unnecessary travel" advisories were posted from Casper to Douglas for I-25.
 
Hundreds of miles of both Interstates 25 and 80 closed on Monday and did not reopen until Tuesday. At one point, I-80 was closed from Evanston to Lyman and from Rawlins to Laramie. As of Tuesday afternoon, I-80 was still closed between Cheyenne and the Nebraska state line. 
 
K2's Cassandra Hager spoke with WYDOT about the closures: 


Accidents 
 
Despite the snow, Casper Police say there were only a half-dozen crashes during the morning commute and only one involved an injury. Police say they are pleased with the low number of accidents, and credit the storm hitting late in the season as drivers are used to the slick conditions. 
 
In Cheyenne, police declared a "snow day" meaning that officers would only respond to calls involving injuries, drunk drivers, immovable vehicles, or the inability to exchange information. Police in Casper did not declare a "snow day."

Airports 
 
The storm caused all the flights in and out of Natrona County International Airport to be cancelled Tuesday morning. Conditions did seem to improve by the afternoon, however, as the airport's website reported two noon-time flights arriving in Casper. 
 
The Denver airport reported at least 500 flights canceled because of the storm.



***Check back later for more updates about the snowstorm as they become available***