HAVRE, Mont. — A winter storm dropped heavy, wet snow in north-central Montana, closing roads and schools and downing power lines.
The National Weather Service in Great Falls reports the storm dumped 2 ½ feet (76 centimeters) of snow in the Bears Paw Mountains south of Havre and east of the Rocky Boy’s Reservation. Meteorologist Paul Nutter says snow drifted up to 6 feet (1.8 meters) deep.
Hill County officials say the city of Havre received about 15 inches (38 centimeters) of snow. The heavy wet snow and wind knocked down trees and power lines.
NorthWestern Energy reported about 7,000 customers were without power from Havre east to Dodson. Another 2,700 customers of electric cooperatives were also without power, according to the Montana Electric Cooperatives Association.
Crews were working to repair damaged transmission and distribution lines, said Butch Larcombe, spokesman for NorthWestern Energy.
Classes were canceled Tuesday at Havre Public Schools and at Montana State University-Northern in Havre along with schools in Harlem, Chinook, Box Elder and Rocky Boy. Classes were not held at Stone Child College on the Rocky Boy’s Indian Reservation. Reservation roads were closed Tuesday morning due to poor driving conditions, while Havre residents were urged not to travel around town due to downed power lines.
The Havre Daily News did not publish a newspaper on Tuesday.
The Hi-Line towns of Hingham and Chester also reported a foot (30 centimeters) of snow.
The Department of Transportation says power lines were down or hanging low across U.S. Highway 2 near Harlem and Dodson. Semis slid off the road in the area, the department reported.