Progress is being made on the eastern plains of Colorado in supplying families and cattle with food and water.
Mesa County Emergency Services Coordinator Kimberly Bullen has been in Baca County as Planning Section Chief since early Wednesday. She says a priority has been getting roads open, but with snow three feet deep on the flats and drifts up to ten feet the going has been slow.
Helicopters and snowmobiles have been doing an excellent job of dropping hay to stranded cattle, she says, but as roads clear and snow melts the emergency effort will soon take on added responsibilities.
Bullen said in a telephone interview on Thursday, "we are starting to enter a new phase of the emergency response. There are a lot of collapsed and partially collapsed buildings in the area, and we are bringing in building inspectors to go through Baca County and ensure those buildings are safe and see what damage they have."
Bullen says there is no way to estimate how severe the loss of cattle could be, but so far no one in Baca County has died or been injured from the storm. Bullen will remain in the southeastern Colorado county for another day or two until another team comes to replace her.