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Winter storm could bring up to 2 feet of snow to central and western USA

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 4 days ago Doyle Rice, USA TODAY
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A "potentially historic" winter storm will slam the north-central USA over the next few days with up to 2 feet of snow possible in some areas.

Snow will accumulate from eastern Washington and Montana to Colorado, the Dakotas, Minnesota and northern Wisconsin, the Weather Channel said. Record low temperatures are also possible Thursday and Friday across the western USA.

The system will produce severe storms and heavy rain Thursday in the southern Plains and critical-to-extreme fire weather threats from the central and southern Rockies to California, the National Weather Service said.

The size and intensity of this snowstorm are unheard of for October, according to AccuWeather.

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In Spokane, Washington, wet, heavy snow snapped tree branches and took out power lines. Avista Utilities was restoring power to 32,000 customers on Wednesday.

Driving conditions are deteriorating across Montana and northern Wyoming as ice and blowing snow covered roadways.

A slew of winter storm warnings, watches and freeze warnings were in effect across parts of seven states as the storm ramped up Wednesday, AccuWeather said.

Significant travel disruptions, tree damage and sporadic power outages will be possible where the heaviest snow occurs, the weather service in Grand Forks, North Dakota, warned.

Denver and Minneapolis could see their first snow of the season, the Weather Channel said.

a close up of a flower: Sunflowers bow and break under the falling wet snow in Great Falls, Mont., Sept. 28, 2019. © Rion Sanders, The Great Falls Tribune via AP Sunflowers bow and break under the falling wet snow in Great Falls, Mont., Sept. 28, 2019.

The storm will have two parts, the first of which is targeting the northern and central Rockies and High Plains on Wednesday into Thursday. The second part will bring snow to the eastern and central portions of the Dakotas and western Minnesota by week's end.

"Near-blizzard to full-fledged blizzard conditions are possible across portions of central North Dakota Friday afternoon into Saturday morning," the weather service in Bismarck said. "Expect high impacts and dangerous to impossible travel conditions."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Winter storm, snow take aim at North Dakota, Minnesota, Colorado

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