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Colorado Winter Weather Preparedness Week introduction

Sunday, October 15th, 2017 3:42am MST
Don't be caught off guard by winter weather! Remember the Christmas Eve Blizzard of 1982? Be prepared!

Don’t be caught off guard by winter weather! Remember the Christmas Eve Blizzard of 1982? Be prepared!

Winter weather in Colorado can be an inconvenience but more than that it can be deadly.  Emergency preparedness for major winter storms – as well as for other types of severe weather – is an important part of living in a state where conditions can change wildly from one moment to the next.

To help raise awareness of the need to be prepared for these occasions, the week of October 15th to October 21st has been proclaimed Winter Weather Preparedness Week in Colorado.

The National Weather Service will be issuing Public Information Statements each day this week to highlight the dangers of winter weather and how best to be prepared.  ThorntonWeather.com will be posting these important messages here to help you be prepared.  Please take the time to read and heed these messages – your life and the lives of your loved ones could depend on it.

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From the National Weather Service:

Public Information Statement
National Weather Service
Grand Junction CO

..Winter Weather Preparedness Week in Colorado…

Governor John Hickenlooper has proclaimed the week of October 18th through October 24th as Winter Weather Preparedness Week in Colorado. This is an excellent time for all individuals, families, businesses, schools, and media outlets to review their winter storm preparedness plans. It is especially important for all new arrivals to the state to become familiar with the National Weather Service watch and warning definitions, as well as winter safety procedures.

Snow in Colorado is important to the farmers, the ski areas, and for filling up reservoirs. However, winter storms often bring heavy snow, bitter cold air, high winds, low visibilities and slick roads. This can lead to dangerous travel conditions and other life threatening situations such as avalanches and very frigid wind chill temperatures.

To help you prepare for these hazards this coming winter…the National Weather Service will issue statements throughout the week to discuss:

Intro Winter Weather Preparedness Week
Part 1 Winter travel safety
Part 2 Watches…warnings…and advisories
Part 3 High winds
Part 4 Wind chill temperatures and hypothermia
Part 5 Avalanche safety
Review Winter Weather Preparedness Week review

Anyone who needs information on winter storms in Colorado should contact their nearest National Weather Service office.

Boulder office 303-494-3210
Grand Junction office 970-243-7007
Goodland Kansas office 785-899-7119
Pueblo office…
 – If you live near Pueblo 719-948-3371
 – If you live near Colorado Springs 719-573-6846
 – If you live near Alamosa 719-589-3232
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Thornton’s Friday and weekend weather to feature cool temps, dry conditions

Friday, October 13th, 2017 8:59am MST

With the passage of the cold front yesterday evening, we will see things cool down for a few days. However, we will remain dry and still see a healthy big of sun for the weekend.

For Friday the 13th, sunny to mostly sunny skies will be the rule throughout the day. Overall conditions will be calm and dry with temperatures heading toward a high approaching the mid-60s.

Tonight, mostly clear skies will be above with overnight lows right around 40 degrees.

Saturday will see trough dig in mixing things up a bit with cooler temperatures and some wind. We will start out sunny early then see a bit of an increase in cloud cover. Winds will initially be light but then in the afternoon and evening pick up the pace with gusts over 30mph being possible. High temperatures will be in the mid to upper 50s.

Saturday night into Sunday morning will be mostly clear and also quite chilly with lows near, perhaps below, the freezing mark.

We close out the weekend on Sunday with lots of sun and no cloud cover expected. Highs will be in the low 60s. For the evening when the Broncos play the Giants, look for it to be cool but calm and dry.

Have a great weekend!

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Watch: Drone Footage Shows California Fire Devastation Aftermath

Friday, October 13th, 2017 8:57am MST

Wildfires in Northern California have caused massive devastation, killing at least 26 and destroying people’s homes and businesses. There were still 22 wildfires fires blazing Thursday morning. The fires have burned over 190,000 acres of land and 3,500 structures. » Click here to read the rest of Watch: Drone Footage Shows California Fire Devastation Aftermath

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Fear, Frustration for Those Near California Fire Evacuation Zone

Friday, October 13th, 2017 4:50am MST

As the sun rose on another day of battling wildfires in Northern California, smoke and haze filled the skies. People are on the move in cars stuffed with belongings. They are either fleeing from a newly announced evacuation zone or returning to a neighborhood that may have been spared, trying to get back to their homes. » Click here to read the rest of Fear, Frustration for Those Near California Fire Evacuation Zone

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Yellowstone Supervolcano Could Erupt Quickly

Thursday, October 12th, 2017 8:46am MST

The supervolcano lurking beneath Yellowstone National Park might be getting ready to explode, an eruption that could be devastating to life on Earth. Scientists reported during a volcanology conference that it could take as little as a human lifetime for a dormant volcano to wake up and prepare itself for a massive eruption, the New York Times says. » Click here to read the rest of Yellowstone Supervolcano Could Erupt Quickly

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Mild temperatures and a good bit of sun for Thursday

Thursday, October 12th, 2017 4:51am MST

A nice looking day ahead for us. Thornton will enjoy high temperatures above normal and while there will be a few clouds, there will be plenty of sun.

The day starts with mostly clear skies then we do expect to see some high level clouds. They however should not be very intrusive at all. Winds will be light and out of the west for most of the day.

Temperatures start out a bit chilly but then will begin a steady upward climb toward a high in the low to mid-70s. The average high temperature for the date is 67 degrees.

Tonight, mostly to partly cloudy skies will be above. Lows will be dipping to near 40 degrees.

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Tense battles across Northern California as firestorm grows; 23 dead, hundreds missing

Thursday, October 12th, 2017 4:20am MST

Thousands of firefighters battled through another tense night on the fire lines across Northern California, officials said early Thursday, and increasing winds prompted authorities to evacuate entire towns as flames descended. The massive Atlas Peak fire in Napa and Solano counties grew to 43,000 acres, burning the eastern hills surrounding Napa, Napa County spokeswoman Nikki Lundeen… » Click here to read the rest of Tense battles across Northern California as firestorm grows; 23 dead, hundreds missing

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October 8 to October 14: This week in Denver weather history

Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 12:34pm MST
This Week In Denver Weather History

October 9 to October 14: This Week in Denver Weather History

Denver has yet to get a taste of wintry weather this year as we continue what has been a very dry period the last few months. In the past that hasn’t always been the case and our look back at this week in Denver weather history shows that heavy, winter-like snowstorms can and do strike in October.

From the National Weather Service:

7-8

In 1990…the season’s first snow occurred. Snowfall amounts varied from 3 to 7 inches across metro Denver. Snowfall totaled 4.0 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 29 mph.

8

In 1923…southeast winds were sustained to 44 mph with gusts to 47 mph. The strong winds persisted through the afternoon. The high temperature of 77 degrees was the warmest of the month that year.

In 1975…a wind gust to near 100 mph was recorded in Boulder. Frequent wind gusts to 60 mph were reported along the foothills causing only minor damage. West winds gusted to 45 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

9

In 1910…light smoke from forest fires in the mountains was sighted over the city.

In 1982…northwest winds gusted to 49 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

9-10

In 2005…a major winter storm brought heavy…wet snowfall to the Front Range mountains…eastern foothills…portions of metro Denver…and the Palmer Divide. Snow accumulations ranged from 8 to 26 inches with drifts from 3 to 4 feet in places. The heaviest snow occurred to the east and southeast of the city…closing most major highways in that area…including I-70 from Denver to Limon. The Red Cross opened four shelters for people who were stranded along I-70 in eastern Colorado. Since many trees had not yet shed their leaves…the storm caused significant tree damage. One woman in Denver was killed when a tree branch… 8 to 10 inches in diameter…snapped under the weight of the heavy…wet snow and struck her as she was shoveling her driveway. Xcel Energy reported power outages to about 35 thousand customers. Several incoming flights were delayed at Denver International Airport. Snow totals included: 16 inches in the foothills near Boulder…12 inches at Genesee and near Golden…22 inches near Watkins…19 inches near Bennett…17 inches southeast of Aurora…14 inches near Parker…13 inches near Castle Rock…12 inches in centennial… 11 inches in Parker…and 10 inches at Denver International Airport and in Littleton. While many areas of metro Denver received heavy snow…others experienced almost entirely rain. This included west and northwest metro Denver…Boulder…and Longmont. Rainfall amounts were significant as storm totals ranged between 1.50 and 2.50 inches. The steady rainfall triggered 3 rockslides in foothills canyons. Two of the slides occurred on State Highway 119 in Boulder Canyon and the longest slide…7 feet in length…on State Highway 74 in Bear Creek Canyon at Idledale. North winds were sustained to around 23 mph with gusts to 31 mph at Denver International Airport on the 9th. The high temperature of only 34 degrees on the 10th was a record low maximum for the date. The low temperature on both days was 32 degrees.

10

In 1901…an evening thunderstorm produced east winds to 43 mph with gusts to 48 mph.

In 1949…strong winds believed to be the worst in Boulder’s history at the time caused over 100 thousand dollars damage in the city. Peak winds were estimated to 85 mph at Valmont…just east of Boulder. High winds also occurred over most of metro Denver and caused damage to trees…window glass…and utility lines. The damage was most pronounced over the northwest metro area…including north Denver and Lakewood. Falling tree branches caused damage to parked autos and houses. Wind gusts to 70 mph were recorded at Stapleton Airport.

In 1964…lightning struck and killed a 13-year-old boy…while he was riding his bicycle along a tree-lined residential street in south Denver. Apparent microburst winds gusted to 54 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

10-11

In 1986…the first significant snowstorm of the season produced 2 to 5 inches of snow over metro Denver with 5 to 10 inches in the foothills west of Denver. Wondervu recorded the most snow from the storm…13 inches. The heavy wet snow caused numerous power outages. The storm was accompanied by strong north winds with gusts to 41 mph recorded on the 10th. The first snowfall of the season totaled 3.1 inches at Stapleton International Airport with only one inch on the ground due to melting. The strong cold front accompanying the storm cooled the temperature from a high of 73 degrees on the 10th to a high of only 33 degrees on the 11th…which was a record low maximum for the date.

10-12

In 1969…the second heavy snowstorm in less than a week dumped nearly a foot of snow across metro Denver and plunged the area into extremely cold temperatures for so early in the season. Snowfall totaled 11.0 inches at Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusting to 26 mph produced drifts up to 2 feet deep. Temperatures dipped from a high of 52 degrees on the 10th to a record low for the date of 10 degrees on the 12th. There was additional damage to trees and power and telephone lines from heavy snow accumulations and icing. Travel was restricted or blocked by drifting snow in both the mountains and on the plains east of Denver.

11

In 1997…damaging winds ahead of an approaching storm system developed in the foothills and spread across metro Denver. Winds gusted to 88 mph at conifer…71 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research on the mesa in Boulder… And 53 mph at Denver International Airport. Several trees and street signs were blown down with scattered power outages reported throughout metro Denver. In Arvada…a car window was blown out by a strong wind gust.

In 2013…high winds occurred in and near the Front Range Foothills. Peak gusts included: 85 mph at Rooney Road…84 mph…2 miles south of Marshall; 82 mph at Rocky Flats National Wind Technology Center and Wondervu; 79 mph at the Mesa Lab at NCAR and 75 mph…3 miles south-southwest of Boulder; 73 mph in Superior and 68 mph in Golden. The wind downed trees and power lines. As a result…scattered electrical outages affected 20000 Xcel Energy customers through the morning hours. The main outages affected the cities of Boulder…Golden and Lakewood. Smaller outages were reported in areas of Gold Hill…Ward… Westminster and Wheat Ridge.

» Click here to read the rest of October 8 to October 14: This week in Denver weather history

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Wednesday to offer seasonal temperatures, lots of sun

Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 4:54am MST

A largely ‘normal’ October day ahead for Thornton. Temperatures should top out right near average for the date and we will see lots of sun and calm conditions.

The day starts with sunny skies and other than a few clouds this afternoon, the view above will be dominated by those beautiful blue Colorado skies. Temperatures start out quite chilly early but then we will see a steady warm up toward a high of 67 degrees.

Tonight, skies remain mostly clear and lows will dip to the mid-40s.

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More than 5,000 homes evacuated as Orange County fire grows to 6,000 acres

Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 3:03am MST

LOS ANGELES — A wind-fed wildfire surged over the Anaheim Hills on Monday, burning several homes and forcing thousands to evacuate as fire crews struggled to battle the rapidly growing blaze. The fire broke out around 9:20 a.m. near the 91 Freeway and Gypsum Canyon Road, and quickly leaped the California 241 toll road. It raced… » Click here to read the rest of More than 5,000 homes evacuated as Orange County fire grows to 6,000 acres

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