Strong winds will lead to a blizzard in parts of Montana on Tues - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Strong winds will lead to a blizzard in parts of Montana on Tuesday

Posted: Feb 12, 2018 4:37 PM Updated:

Story Highlights

  • A Blizzard Warning is in effect for the Northern Rocky Mountain Front
  • Blowing snow is expected to cause significant travel trouble
  • Wind chills will remain dangerously low through early Tuesday

Blizzard Warning issued

Strong winds are expected to develop early Tuesday morning, creating areas of blowing snow east of the Rocky Mountains.

The National Weather Service has issued a Blizzard Warning for the Northern Rocky Mountain Front through Tuesday, in anticipation of whiteout conditions that will make driving nearly impossible.

Elsewhere, Winter Weather Advisories are in effect for the adjacent plains, where areas of blowing snow could reduce visibility at times, making it difficult to drive.

STORMTracker meteorologist Mike Rawlins says he expects wind gusts of 30-50 mph through Tuesday evening.

Those strong winds are expected to pick up snow on the ground, creating a "ground blizzard" in this area.

Drivers should be prepared for significant drifting snow on the highways and major reductions in visibility.

A blizzard doesn't necessarily involve a winter storm or falling snow. The definition of a blizzard is comprised of three parts: 1) 35 mph sustained winds, 2) 1/4 mile visibility or less, and 3) at least 3 consecutive hours of these conditions.

Dangerously low wind chills

Montana was the coldest place in the continental United States on Monday with a low of -38° in Malta.

The coldest wind chill, -62°, was recorded at Mud Lake in Hill County.

Wind Chill Advisories remain in effect for most of northern Montana through Tuesday morning.

Wind chills are expected to dip to near -30° at times, which can result in frostbite within 10 minutes.

If you're venturing outdoors, then you're advised to cover any exposed skin to avoid frostbite or hypothermia.

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