Dec 19, 2012 6:45 PM by Andy Koen

Blizzard closes highways, freezes gas pumps

CALHAN - It's the kind of storm that makes driving even short distances a challenge. Gusting winds and blowing snow on the eastern planes created whiteout conditions Wednesday afternoon, making travel dangerous enough that the Colorado Department of Transportation Closed Highway 24 east of Calhan and CO Hwy 94 east of Enoch Rd.

Kevin Marrion was working to protect modular construction project just outside of Calhan.

"It's pretty bad," Marrion said. "We were going about 10 miles an hour, the job site's about two miles from here and, you know, it's just about 5 miles an hour the whole way, real bad, real windy poor visibility."

He stopped to fill up before heading back towards Colorado Springs, but the freezing temps kept the pumps from working.

Todd Vetrano and his partner at Dan's Trash Service had been on their route since 7:00 a.m. when they stopped for lunch. By midday, the visibility US 24 was so poor they called it a day.

"We don't want to cause any accidents or anything like that or ourselves get into an accident," Vetrano said. "We're just taking the safe road and getting in and we'll get caught up next week."

Severe weather isn't out of the ordinary here. At 6,535 feet, Calhan has the second highest elevation of any community in El Paso County. But that doesn't make weathering the storm any easier.


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