Major Arizona storm: 'Enormous' amounts of snow, damaging winds, power outages
PHOENIX - This latest winter storm to hit Arizona has had massive impacts. Arizona residents and first responder agencies from all over are reporting "enormous" amounts of snow, major highways being closed, damaging winds knocking down trees and signs, and thousands being without power.
We have the latest on the conditions impacting different parts of the state.
Phoenix area saw rain, light snow
The storm also brought heavy rain across the Valley - and on Thursday morning, it brought a light dusting of snow.
Some trees fell over in during the downpour Wednesday. In the East Valley, a freeway sign fell onto the US 60.
According to the National Weather Service, most of the Phoenix metropolitan area received at least 0.5" of rain, with more than an inch measured in the Cave Creek and Carefree areas.
Snow was reported in north Scottsdale and in the Cave Creek area during the overnight hours.
Meanwhile, flights at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport were delayed Wednesday night by about two to three hours as a result of the storm.
"A total of 41 flights have diverted from PHX due to high winds this evening. However, we are now receiving arriving and departing aircraft," Phoenix Sky Harbor said in an email to FOX 10.
Northern Arizona blanketed with snow
In Flagstaff, people have been dealing with yet another round of snow that have buried cars, shut down highways and caused schools and businesses to close.
Widespread and extremely heavy snow fell during the afternoon hours and into the nighttime hours.
Snow drifts in town stood over six feet tall, and crews are still working to clear it.
With the winter weather also means dangerous road conditions. The conditions so bad, truck routes and even some anniversary plans were canceled.
"With the snow on the ground, it’s really hard to see," said one truck driver, identified only as ‘Tim.’ "I was only doing, like, 20 miles an hour coming down."
Tim was among the lucky ones, as he made it into Flagstaff before the storm hit.
"I went up about two o’clock this morning. It didn’t start doing anything until I hit Munds Park. Started to snow going up north, and on the way back, it was just impossible to see. It was very bad," said Tim.
Another truck driver, identified only as ‘Tony,’ wasn't as lucky. He didn't make it into Flagstaff.
"It was whiteout," said Tony. "As soon as you start pulling into Stoneman and I went up to 315 and turned around and came back. You couldn’t see the road, and I was done."
Tony, who drives the route on a daily basis, says the conditions were some of the worst he has seen.
"You’re sliding around, and there’s a lot of wind, so you don’t want to get blown off of the road," said Tony.
The storm has also disrupted travel plans for Lupe and Elena Hernandez. They are visiting Arizona from Texas for their 24th anniversary. The two are visiting Arizona for the first time, and had plans to spend the day at the Grand Canyon.
"Looking at the weather coming in and driving up there, we didn’t want to take the chance, so we just canceled it. Instead of going up there, we’ll just go home early," said Luipe.
"We came prepared with warm clothes, but not for the snow!" said Elena.
The couple plans to visit Arizona again in 2024, for their 25th anniversary.
Main thoroughfare shut down
Drivers who talked to FOX 10 say there were thousands of people stranded on I-40 Wednesday afternoon.
"We are responding to calls for assistance in the order they are received. As you know, Interstate 40 is closed from the Nevada state line to New Mexico. An enormous amount of snow fell in the Kingman area which is causing the issue," the Arizona Department of Public Safety said.
Near Williams, DPS reports there is a "seven-vehicle injury collision WB I-40 at MP 157. Six passenger cars and a semi are involved. The roadway is completely blocked. Only minor injuries were reported."
Snow in Sedona, AZ. (Vince Allen)
APS outage map: https://outagemap.aps.com/outageviewer/
SRP outage map: https://myaccount.srpnet.com/power/myaccount/outages
You can always check the latest weather conditions by visiting the FOX 10 Phoenix weather page, or download the Free FOX 10 Weather app, which is available on Apple iOS and Android.