WEATHER -- October 4, 2013 at 6:17 PM ET
Early snowstorm threatens Midwest
It may only be October, but a severe snowstorm has already buffeted Wyoming and South Dakota and threatens the rest of the Midwest Friday. This unseasonably early snow is strong with almost three feet of snow falling in South Dakota, and residents preparing for even more. Winter Storm Atlas is also expected to bring heavy snowfall, severe thunderstorms and tornadoes to parts of the Rockies, the Plains and Midwest.
"I've lived in Wyoming my whole life and I've never seen it like this this early. I know several of the businesses nearby are completely closed because they can't even get workers into work -- it's pretty nasty," Patricia Whitman, a truck stop shift manager, said to the Associated Press.
Winter Storm Atlas could be the earliest snowfall on record in towns throughout the Midwest, and it's already made its impact felt. The snow has crushed tree lines and destroyed power lines, causing many residents in Wyoming and South Dakota to lose power. Accuweather.com reports that the storm has caused 470 flight delays at Denver International Airport. Numerous roads have been closed, including sections of the I-90 and I-25. It also spawned a tornado in Nebraska, although no one was injured when it touched down.
The storm is expected to dissipate over the weekend, with highs in Denver to reach the 70s by early next week.