Winter storm hits Oklahoma

Winter storm hits Oklahoma

CREATED Feb. 20, 2013 - UPDATED: Feb. 21, 2013

(AP) - An armada of snow plows and salt spreaders deployed Wednesday on highways across the nation's heartland working to stay ahead of a powerful winter storm that already is blamed for one road death.

Winter storm warnings were issued from Colorado through Illinois, with as much as a foot of snow expected in several areas.

Kelly Sugden, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Dodge City, Kan., said early Thursday morning that the storm was moving a bit slower than was previously forecast but that it was "starting to get back together."

"It's very active," Sugden said, noting the snowfall was mixed with lightning and sleet showers.

Sugden said Wednesday's highest snowfall total for the state was 6½ inches recorded in the tiny central town of Rozel. He said they were expecting heavy snow but not blizzard conditions. Still, he warned that the Interstate 70 corridor could see as much as 13 inches of snow with drifts adding to the danger for drivers.

Heavy snow was already falling in Colorado and western Kansas by midday Wednesday. In Oklahoma, roads were covered with a slushy mix of snow and ice that officials said caused a crash that killed an 18-year-old man.

Cody Alexander, 18, of Alex, Okla., died Wednesday when the pickup truck he was driving skidded out of control in slush on State Highway 19, crossed into oncoming traffic and was hit by a truck, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol said. The other driver was not seriously injured.

And in northern Arkansas a school bus crashed Wednesday afternoon on a steep, snowy country road, leaving three students and the driver with minor injuries. Pope County Sheriff Aaron Duval said the bus slid off a road on Crow Mountain, nearly flipping before it was stopped by trees at the roadside.

Copyright 2013, The Associated Press

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