After a couple of weeks of warm weather, Mother Nature brought winter back to the area with a vengeance over the weekend, with storms dropping more than 10 inches of snow in Havre and blanketing most of the eastern portion with heavy snowfall. “We’ve been pretty busy all weekend,” Mike MacDonald, area maintenance chief fo r t h e Mo n ta n a De p a r tme n t o f Transportation said this morning. The snow fell mainly Friday afternoon through Saturday night. The Weather Service forecast for this week predicts no snow in Havre, with lows from zero to -13 and highs from 8 to 19 degrees fahrenheit, through Friday. The snowfall kept many government entities busy over the weekend and into this week. MacDonald said Montana Highway 66 south of Fort Belknap and Montana Highway 241 heading to Turner were closed Sunday, but had been opened again this morning. The main snowfall in the Havre MDT work area started near Chester and went east, with less snow removal needed to the west, MacDonald said. The area hardest hit was Harlem, due to heavy blowing, he added. The snow did have some impact on Havre High School activities. The wrestling team came back early Saturday from Lewistown when the two-day meet was Shortened to let people get back on the road. The Havre speech and debate team also left an hour or so earlier than expected from its Central Division tournament in Belgrade to try to get home a little earlier due to the weather. The high school’s boys and girls basketball teams both returned Saturday as well from their games in Belgrade. The snowfall also kept the H a v r e P u b l i c Wo r k s Department busy, said Dave Peterson, Havre public works director. “Nothing that we can’t get taken care of,” he said. “We had crews out clearing the snow routes, and we’re doing the same today, trying to clear some of the intersections.” Peterson said the Public Works employees were out Sunday clearing the snow routes, such as the streets providing access to the hospital, including 11th Street, 13th Street, 9th Street and 12th Avenue. The crews were back out today doing more work on those routes, and Peterson said he hopes to have them working in the downtown area tonight. He said the department then will concentrate on secondary routes such as 3rd and 6th avenues. Most residential areas will not be a priority, although he said people in areas that are having problems can call the department at 265-4941 to let the workers know about any problems such as heavy drifting. Havre Police Chief Jerry Nystrom said the weekend was nothing out of the ordinary for Havre officers. Officers did investigate several crashes over the area and responded to a couple of calls from people asking for help with stuck vehicles. Jerry Otto, supervisor of the Hill County Road and Bridge Department, said his crews have been busy as well. “We plowed all day yesterday, and we’re plowing again today,” he said. Otto said the areas needing the most work have been the southern part of the county and some spots in the north near the Canadian border. Otto said his department has had nine graders and one truck out plowing since the snow hit. They are trying to work in requests by county residents as they can, making loops to hit as many as we can. It is a substantial list, he said. “Just a couple of pages,” Otto said. “We write down the list and try to get to them as soon as we can.” He said people who need a road plowed should call the department at 265-8507 as soon as possible. “(Anyone with) snow trouble, please call in, and that helps tremendously,” Otto said.
Storm sweeps the state, blankets Havre area
Published: Monday, January 25th, 2010
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