Snowstorm Hits Western US

Flights delayed, motorists stranded
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 23, 2011 9:15 PM CST
Dozens of vehicles sit along the side of a highway in Rio Rancho, NM, waiting for authorities to reopen US 550 northbound on Friday, Dec. 23, 2011.    (Susan Montoya Bryan)
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(Newser) – Heavy snow from a winter storm blanketed parts of the West today, stranding motorists throughout New Mexico and delaying holiday travelers trying to fly in and out of Albuquerque and Denver. The snow and high winds struck the region yesterday and forced dozens of drivers off Interstate 40 after severe conditions made driving in western New Mexico nearly impossible. Parts of western New Mexico were slammed with more than a foot of snow by this morning, and some parts of the state saw 17 inches of snow as state and local police responded to dozens of minor accidents. (Read more winter weather stories.)

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