National Guard troops are using specialized vehicles with tank-like treads to rescue stranded drivers in Colorado in the wake of a massive late-winter storm that is expected to unleash heavy rain and snow on the Midwest plains on Thursday. Wednesday's blizzard, classified as a "bomb cyclone" caused widespread power outages, forced the cancellation of hundreds of flights, and wreaked havoc on roadways as drivers became overwhelmed by blinding snow, the AP reports. A wind gust clocked in at 97mph in Colorado Springs.
The storm also contributed to the death of Corporal Daniel Groves, a Colorado State Patrol officer who was hit and killed by a car as he helped a driver who had slid off Interstate 76 near Denver. "It is a tragic reminder that people's lives are at stake," said Shoshana Lew, head of the Colorado Department of Transportation. "The best place to be is at home and off the roads." The window-rattling storm brought blizzards, floods, and a tornado across more than 25 states Wednesday, stretching from the northern Rocky Mountains to Texas and beyond. "This is a very epic cyclone," says Greg Carbin at the NOAA's Weather Prediction Center. "We're looking at something that will go down in the history books."
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