BRUSH, Colo. (KDVR) — There was heavy snowfall and strong winds in Morgan County for nearly 12 hours Tuesday forcing two interstates to be shut down.
The communities of Brush and Fort Morgan were hit hard by the storm which continued to cause problems Tuesday afternoon.
Strong winds started blowing through this stretch of northern Colorado around 3 a.m. Whiteout conditions soon followed.
Interstare 76 was shut down by the Colorado Department of Transportation from the town of Brush to the Nebraska border. Interstate 70 was also shut down east of Aurora for an extended period of time.
The biggest problem was the wind over Colorado’s northeastern plains.
“We do have to worry about that drifting snow. (We) worry about the visibility, especially in Fort Morgan, Brush and Sterling and then down on I-70 toward Limon and (out) east.
At times the snow was blinding and the wind was relentless. FOX31 Pinpoint Weather meteorologists said gusts were greater than 50 mph while our crews were reporting in the field.
Eighteen-wheelers were pulled off the shutdown interstate.
“Right now (I am) driving with an empty trailer there’s no control. Wind is whipping us back and forth on an icy road (that’s) asking for a headache and problems. It’s safer just to park,” Arizona truck driver Daniel Stewart said.
Susan Ricketts who lives near Brush had to leave her home for an emergency and was caught in a whiteout.
“You can’t hardly see. You (have) to go like 5 miles an hour and it’s bad,” Ricketts said.
Truck drivers and families were both caught by surprise.
“It was pretty clear from Pueblo to Denver until we got to here and then boom! It hit us,” Pueblo resident Justine Gonzales-Lefebre said.
Many people were stuck and not able to get on the interstate.
The wind isn’t expected to die down anytime soon as the blizzard warning for the area is in effect until midnight.