Wind, dust make travel dangerous, drive wildfire in west central Nebraska | Local

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West central Nebraska endured a next day of substantial north-northwest winds and blowing dust Thursday, with a wind-driven Gosper County wildfire for good evaluate.

The region’s maximum recorded wind gusts by midafternoon ended up 71 mph east of McCook and 70 mph north of Damaged Bow, both amongst 11:30 a.m. and midday CT.

A 68 mph gust was recorded in that very same time interval 4 miles east of North Platte, in accordance to the Nationwide Temperature Assistance workplace at Lee Hen Area.

Elwood and Lexington firefighters ended up battling a big grass hearth Thursday afternoon west of the intersection of U.S. Highway 283 and Nebraska Highway 18.

It was about 2 miles very long at 12:32 p.m. CT, according to the climate service.

A spotter then put the blaze close to the intersection of Gosper County roadways 739 and 420, about 7 miles west-southwest of Elwood.

Elwood volunteer firefighters, who ended up initially on the scene, paged their Lexington counterparts for mutual aid at 2:21 p.m. Gusts of up to 43 mph appeared to be driving the fire’s route southeast.

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The Jim Kelly Field airport in Lexington had recorded a 58 mph gust about an hour before. A spotter about 3 miles south of Johnson Lake documented a 56 mph gust there about 10 a.m.

Substantial plumes of gray, white and black smoke loaded the horizon south of Elwood. They were being blowing across gravel-surfaced Nebraska 18, which ends at U.S. 283 and was shut by the Nebraska Office of Transportation.

The Nebraska Point out Patrol urged motorists to be cautious as the wind and dust manufactured vacation hazardous on Interstate 80 and other highways.

The patrol posted a Facebook information to motorists on I-80: “Multiple semis have overturned in the wind and blowing dust is producing visibility challenges in some locations. Very good thought to uncover a safe and sound location to park for a little bit if you are in a large-profile vehicle.”

One toppled semitrailer truck early Thursday afternoon briefly blocked eastbound I-80 traffic in close proximity to mile marker 146 just exterior Paxton. No just one was injured.

In southwest Nebraska, the weather conditions provider explained visibility was near zero about 1 p.m. CT on the Veterans Memorial Freeway, a non-state highway in Hitchcock County about 8 miles west-southwest of Palisade.

Trenton, the Hitchcock County seat, experienced a 62 mph wind gust at 1:18 p.m. CT. Visibility there was about 1 mile at the time, the climate company reported.

An additional spotter reported about 3:30 p.m. that a Wendy’s Restaurant indicator experienced been blown down in McCook.

A 65 mph gust was recorded 4 miles south of McCook at 10:49 a.m. CT, an hour prior to the 71 mph gust 2 miles east of the metropolis.

Other best gusts in the area have been 64 mph at Imperial 62 mph at Thedford 61 mph at Willow Island, involving Gothenburg and Cozad and 60 mph readings west of Sumner and at the Interstate 76 interchange at Julesburg, Colorado.

Relief from the week’s higher winds is on its way, in accordance to the temperature provider office environment at the North Platte airport.

Top gusts of 45 mph remained doable Thursday evening, but winds are envisioned to sluggish Friday to sustained speeds of 15 to 20 mph and peak gusts all-around 30 mph.

Friday’s large ought to be in the mid-50s, but winds will switch to a southerly direction Saturday and generate temperatures that working day into the mid-70s.

Each day highs will be all over 60 on Palm Sunday and Monday, warming to the mid-60s Tuesday.

Probabilities of rain and snow showers then shift in, with blustery, chillier conditions returning Wednesday and Thursday. Highs the two times ought to be in the mid-40s.

Brian Neben of the Lexington Clipper-Herald contributed to this report.

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