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Blizzard Cripples Plains, Severe weather including possible tornadoes hit midwest as powerful storm moves out

Blizzard Cripples Plains, Severe weather including possible tornadoes hit midwest as powerful storm moves out

ABC News(NEW YORK) — A massive storm crippled the Rockies and northern Plains with a powerful blizzard, dropping more than a foot of snow, closing interstates and stranding drivers.

As poor driving conditions overwhelmed Colorado roads, Colorado State Patrol Cpl. Daniel Groves was struck and killed by a car, officials said.

As the storm moved east Thursday, at least three tornadoes were reported: two in western Kentucky and one in southern Indiana.

Nearly 80 million Americans are still at the mercy of this powerful storm Thursday as it brings dangerous blizzard conditions to the Rockies and Midwest, strong storms to Mississippi and Tennessee, and damaging winds to Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana.

Here is the latest forecast:

Severe thunderstorms will continue to impact parts of the South and the Midwest through Thursday evening before the threat passes. These severe thunderstorms can bring powerful, damaging winds gusts, large hail and tornadoes.

Wind advisories are in effect for cites including Kansas City, Missouri, and Cleveland, Ohio.

Flood watches are also in place in the upper Midwest, including in Minneapolis and Milwaukee.

While this storm didn’t bring huge rainfall totals, the heavy rain that did fall had nowhere to go, so already elevated river levels in the region quickly rose above flood stage.

At least one tornado was also reported in Paducah, Kentucky, Thursday morning.

Winds over 50 mph are possible Thursday across much of the central U.S., from the Dakotas to Indianapolis to Chicago to St. Louis. Downed trees, power outages and property damage are possible.

No significant severe weather is expected for most of the East Coast. There could be some strong wind gusts across parts of the Great Lakes into Thursday night; however, calmer and quieter weather should overtake much of the Northeast by Friday with only a couple of showers.

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