Area hit by winter storm packing strong winds, heavy snow
A strong winter storm packing gusty winds and heavy snow blew through North Central Kansas on Sunday causing hazardous driving conditions.
Concordia received eight inches of snow, and a wind gusts of 68 miles per hour was reported at at Kansas Department of Transportation site.
The National Weather Service Office (NWSO) recorded a 60 mile per hour gust at Blosser Municipal Airport.
Light rain started to fall in Concordia at about 2 a.m. Sunday. There was light rain mixed with snow about around 4:30 a.m. with some thunder. That would change over to snow at about 5 a.m.
Moderate and heavy snow, along with strong winds, resulted in blizzard conditions.
According to Kyle Poage of the NWSO, blizzard conditions are a combination of snow and sustained winds of 35 miles per hour or stronger that result in visibility of less than one-quarter mile for at least three hours.
Kansas Governor Jeff Coyler issued a State of Disaster Emergency for the state. It authorizes the use of state resources and personnel to assist with response and recover operations in affected counties.
Kansas National Guard personnel assisted law enforcement in Cloud County in helping stranded motorists.
Beginning early Sunday morning through this morning, Budreau Muffler Automotive & Tow had responded to more than 20 calls for vehicles that had slid off roadways.
Cloud County Highway Department administrator Andy Asch said this morning that some of the county roads are drifted shut.
The Highway Department is working to get the main roads and roads to resident's homes clear and will then begin work on the secondary roads.
Asch said that there were drifts on Union Road that were deep enough they required a loader and grader to clear.
The storm resulted in several area schools, including Concordia Unified School District 333 and Cloud County Community College, to close on Monday.
Concordia has now received 11.4 inches of snow this season. That is 9.3 inches above the average of 2.1 inches.
Poage said there is no precipitation in the forecast for Concordia until Thursday, when there is a chance of light rain.
There is a chance for rain-snow mix on Friday night.