Blowing snow turns highways dangerous

Dec. 22, 2007 at 9:16 PM

CHICAGO, Dec. 22 (UPI) -- Blowing snow turned highways treacherous Saturday in the central United States with chain-reaction crashes killing two people in Texas and Kansas.

An 80-vehicle pileup left one person dead and closed Interstate 40 in the Texas Panhandle.

The crash occurred near Rick Husband Amarillo Airport, the Amarillo Globe-News reported. Emergency workers set up a triage center at the airport, which had lost power because of high winds.

The storm only dropped about 2 inches of snow on Amarillo. But the Texas Department of Transportation said that visibility was poor on the highways because of blowing snow.

I-70 between Topeka and Manhattan in Kansas was closed Saturday morning after a 32-vehicle pileup, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported. At least one person was killed.

About 8 inches of snow had fallen by late Saturday afternoon, and police asked area residents to stay off the roads.

In Chicago, at least 50 flights at O'Hare International Airport were canceled Saturday because of thick fog. That was an improvement on Friday night when hundreds of travelers were stranded after 200 flights were canceled.

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