AP NEWS

Storm Brings 2 Inches of Snow to Longmont, Other Areas of County Harder Hit by Wintry Blast

February 7, 2019 GMT

A storm dropped snow throughout the day Wednesday and snarled the afternoon and evening commutes and activities in Longmont, as well as surrounding areas.

Longmont received about 2.4 inches .

Elsewhere as of 6 p.m. Wednesday or shortly before, Lafayette had received 5. 5 inches, Lousiville 4.5 inches and Broomfield 5 inches.

Boulder received about 5.7 inches of snow.

St. Vrain Valley School District had not announced any Thursday morning delays as of 10:20 p.m. Wednesday, but its newsline (303-862-7387) stated any weather-related information will be posted on the district’s website ( svvsd.org ) by 5:30 a.m.

With temperatures expected to be hovering near zero prompted Boulder Valley School District is delaying its start by two hours today, according to an email sent shortly after 10 p.m. by district chief communications officer Randy Barber. School buses will pick up students two hours later than usual and schools will begin classes two hours later than usual. Morning preschool, morning half-day kindergarten, morning preschool/kindergarten enrichment classes and preschool/kindergarten enrichment lunch will be cancelled today. Additionally, before-school child care will be canceled, according to the email.

Wednesday it was snow and temperatures that were causing headaches and slow commutes. The cities of Longmont, Boulder and Broomfield Wednesday night were all placed on accident alert, a tool law enforcement officials use to free up officers during inclement weather. When an accident alert is in effect, those involved in accidents not involving injuries or suspected driving under the influence are asked to exchange information and report the accident as soon as possible.

A Wednesday night meeting in Longmont about RTD’s bus rapid transit and Boulder County transportation’s Colo.119 bikeway was cancelled because of the snow.

St. Vrain Valley School District cancelled a Padres en Educación event, and the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office headquarters in Boulder closed at 3 p.m.

Crews began clearing streets and applying de-icing chemicals as the storm began Wednesday morning, according to Longmont’s transportation department . Officials said crews would actively plow throughout the night, and a partial crew would report at 4 a.m. to check for icy spots and apply treatment before the morning commute.

Kyle Fredin, a National Weather Service meteorologist attributed the differences in snow totals across the region to the banded structure of the storm, and the fact that the band held out over eastern Boulder and northern Jefferson counties longer than expected.

Boulder and Broomfield counties — including Longmont and surrounding cities — were set to be on winter weather advisory through 5 a.m. Thursday.

The National Weather Service cautioned about wind chills as low as 25 degrees below zero, which would cause frostbite on exposed skin in 30 minutes. The advisory also warned about slick spots on the morning commute because of cold conditions overnight.

Although the National Weather Service predicted “decreasing snow coverage” overnight, Fredin said the morning commute will likely be a challenge.

“These roads were pretty warm ahead of this, so there’s going to be some icy crust everywhere,” he said.

By Thursday night, he said, roads will likely be back to normal, and temperatures will begin to warm again on Friday, with snow beginning to melt Friday and Saturday.

Longmont is predicted to see highs in the teens on Thursday, 30s on Friday and 40s on Saturday.

Longer-term forecasts don’t predict more storms until at least this time next week, Fredin said.

He added that although this was a typical Colorado winter storm and would not bring as much moisture as a spring or summer rain shower, the snow would hold the dust down and bring some water to grass and trees.

“Although it’s kind of a pain and an inconvenience for driving and travel, I think people like the snow,” he said, especially in light of slightly lower-than-normal snowfall totals so far this season.

Cassa Niedringhaus: 303-473-1106, cniedringhaus@dailycamera.com