DENVER (KDVR) — The Denver metro area and communities up and down the eastern side of the Continental Divide are preparing for a major snow storm that could drop several feet of snow in many areas.
In Denver proper, about a foot of snow is expected, but areas into the foothills and up north will have more accumulation. Estes Park appears to be the bullseye with four feet of snow likely.
Gov. Jared Polis has activated the Colorado National Guard. About 50 soldiers are now on standby to conduct search and rescue missions, as they did during the 2019 March blizzard.
CDOT has already asked drivers to stay off the roads Saturday and Sunday and warned that closures of I-70, I-25 and I-76 should be expected. To prepare, CDOT is moving many plows from the High Country to the Front Range and staging large piece of road-clearing equipment in areas prone to snow problems.
Hospital emergency rooms are also getting ready for the snowstorm. Many are calling in extra doctors, nurses and more and making sure others are ready to go if needed. They’re making sure their streets and sidewalks will be clear for patients.
“We see a higher level of what we call acuity – more serious injuries or illnesses,” said Dr. Nick Tsipis, an emergency room doctor and Associate Medical Director at Swedish Medical Center. “For folks who do come in, it generally tends to be sicker folks…parents bringing in their children who may be sicker…more serious injuries and illnesses.”
The storm threat is slowing down vaccinations already.
SCL Health, Centura Health, HealthONE and UCHealth already calling off their vaccine drives this weekend, rescheduling shots for thousands.
Polis said the snow shouldn’t impact vaccine delivery.
“At this point, we are not expecting a delay of vaccines. We expect a Monday or Tuesday delivery for next week. We expect the situation will be resolved before and that we have already received the vaccines for this week,” Polis said.
If your provider hasn’t canceled your appointment, be sure to call before you try to head there.