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Winter Storm Hits Western Kansas - Leaves Thousands Without Power, Damages Wheat Crop, Buries Livestock in Snow

Snow blocks Highway 50 in the west-central Kansas town of Lakin on Sunday. (Photo by Jeff Hilger)

Tens of thousands of people remain without power following a weekend blizzard that dumped up to 20 inches of snow across parts of western Kansas. But clean-up efforts are underway. Deborah Shaar has the first of three reports on the late spring storm.

Deborah Shaar is a reporter for KMUW Radio in Wichita.

And, the spring blizzard may have destroyed much of this year’s wheat crop in western Kansas. For Harvest Public Media, Bryan Thompson has that report.

Bryan Thompson is a reporter for the Kansas News Service and a contributor to Harvest Public Media.

Western Kansas Recovering from Weekend Blizzard

A blizzard hit western Kansas over the weekend, shutting down roads and forcing schools to close. The late spring storm also knocked-out power to thousands of residents... and buried livestock in drifts of snow. KPR's J. Schafer spoke to one farmer and rancher who lives near Lakin, in west-central Kansas. Gary Millershaski (MILL-er-SHASH-kee) owns M-K Farms and serves on the Kansas Wheat Commission.

That's Gary Millershaski, owns M-K Farms near Lakin. He was speaking with KPR's J. Schafer.


(AP version)

DODGE CITY, Kan. (AP) — Tens of thousands of people are without power after a spring storm dumped more than a foot of snow across part of western Kansas. National Weather Service meteorologist Mark Buller says that from 10 to nearly 20 inches fell from Friday night through Sunday afternoon in an approximately 40-mile wide band in northwest and west-central Kansas. He says the heavy snow, combined with 40 to 60 mph winds, downed tree limbs. Drifts of up to 5 feet were recorded. Kansas Division of Emergency Management spokeswoman Katie Horner says about 42,000 electric customers were without power at the height of the storm. The storm briefly shut down Interstate 70, and other roads remained closed Monday. Many schools also canceled classes. National Guard teams have been called out at least 40 times to rescue stranded motorists.

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