First winter storm blankets area
The weekend storm that dumped approximately a foot of snow in the metro area Saturday and Sunday was taken seriously by local residents, resulting in few difficulties for police, fire and emergency crews in West Fargo, who were standing by ready to react at a moment's notice.
Assistant Police Chief Mike Reitan said departments were called to a couple of ambulance runs and one apartment fire alarm that crews had difficulty in getting to, but all were minor in nature. A couple of non-injury accidents were also reported.
The biggest threat to personal health were a few individuals out wandering around in the inclemently cold temperatures, that registered well below zero the duration of the storm. One individual, thought to have frozen hands, received shelter in a local motel before being transported from there for medical care.
Reitan said a number of vehicles were also impounded on Monday during the cleanup, because they were either left in the roadway or along emergency snow routes.
Reitan compared the seriousness of this storm to the one experienced during the flooding in 1997. He said receiving one of this magnitude this early is unusual and will have far-reaching effects. "Getting a snow storm at this time of year is going to continue to cause problems as to where we will push the snow and get rid of it. In some areas, there are some pretty good sized drifts along the road that will need to be hauled away, which is a little unusual to be doing now."
Approximately 145 homes in the Eagle Run area of West Fargo were also without power for a short period of time during the storm.
All area schools were closed in the aftermath of the storm and several businesses remained closed for the day or opened a few hours later than normal.
Street department crews were once again out in full force during the storm keeping the snow emergency routes cleared, however, plows were finally pulled off the streets Sunday due to the severity of the storm. Secondary streets and roadways were cleaned Monday, after the snow accumulation and winds had subsided.
Reitan said all in all everyone handled the situation well and things went quite smoothly.
He does offer renewed caution now however, with the subzero temperatures forecast. "We are going to be experiencing some extremely cold temperatures throughout the week. We just want people to be prepared and to be careful."