Winter Storm Snarls Traffic In Mountains, Knocks Out Power

Denver (AP) The snowstorm that has stalled over Colorado is
creating some hazardous driving conditions on much of the Eastern Plains. A Douglas County High School bus slid off a road and backwards down a hill just south of Castle Rock Monday morning. District Spokeswoman Carol Kaness says two students were treated and released from a hospital for minor injuries.

In El Paso County, search and rescue teams are patrolling county roads to try to find and help any stranded motorists and several weather–caused rockslides have been reported, including two within seven miles of each other in Boulder Canyon.

The transportation department has closed several roads around the state, including the 80–mile stretch of Interstate 70 between Limon and Denver and U.S. 24 between Limon and Colorado Springs. Chain restrictions are in place for most mountain passes.

The heavy, wet snow has also knocked out electricity for about 25,000 houses and businesses in Denver. Xcel energy officials don't know when the power will be restored, but crews are working on it.

The national weather service says the storm is likely to stay in the area through Tuesday morning, and winter storm warnings are in place for about the central one–third of the state stretching from New Mexico to Wyoming and from east of Limon to west of Vail.

Forecasters say some parts of the southern mountains might get up to four feet of snow.

Copyright 2005 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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