Storm brings snow and rain to Colorado, but less than expected |

Storm brings snow and rain to Colorado, but less than expected

A spring storm swept across southern Colorado Friday and headed northeast, dropping snow and some rain but packing less punch than forecasters had expected.”It’s not too bad right now,” said Guy Cassazant, manager of the fuel desk at the Rocky Mountain Travel Center truck stop north of Pueblo, about 100 miles south of Denver.”We’re getting the moisture but it’s not too bad,” he said.Most of southeastern Colorado was under a winter storm warning, with 4 to 7 inches of snow forecast – far less than the 18 inches that some parts of the state had been expecting.The National Weather Service warned that winds up to 25 mph could cause snowdrifts and reduce visibility in eastern Colorado Friday, especially along Interstate 70, the state’s main east-west thoroughfare.Slush and snow were reported near the Colorado-New Mexico border on Interstate 25, the main north-south route linking the state’s biggest cities. Some mountain highways had icy and snowy spots, but no roads had closed because of the weather.Denver International Airport, which suffered a 45-hour runway closure during a December blizzard, had prepared for the worst, lining up crews and equipment. United Airlines, the dominant carrier at DIA, canceled 120 flights ahead of the storm but had returned to normal by Friday morning.”I think our operation is pretty much at full speed at this point,” United spokesman Jeff Kovick said.Kovick said the airline consults with its own forecasters and local officials before deciding whether to pre-emptively cancel flights.”It’s impossible to go back and second-guess because it could very easily go the other way next time,” he said.The Legislature took the day off so lawmakers could return from Denver to their districts before the storm hit.”We did it based on warnings from the State Patrol,” said House Majority Leader Alice Madden, D-Boulder. “I thought it was better to keep them safe on their journey home for the weekend.”

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