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High winds plague Pikes Peak region

November 16, 2013 Updated: November 17, 2013 at 1:42 pm
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photo - High winds Saturday brought down one tree in Manitou Springs. (Dena Rosenberry, The Gazette)
High winds Saturday brought down one tree in Manitou Springs. (Dena Rosenberry, The Gazette) 

High winds played havoc around the Pikes Peak region Saturday, sending road-clogging tumbleweeds across highways, snapping a power pole in Manitou Springs and causing a small fire in Teller County.

No serious damage or injuries were reported.

About 8 p.m. Saturday, authorities closed southbound lanes of Hancock Expressway, near Yucatan Drive in the Security-Widefield area south of Colorado Springs, so that road crews could clear tumbleweeds from the road, according to police radio dispatches.

Earlier in the day, police dispatchers fielded calls about tumbleweeds creating problems for motorists on Interstate 25, around the Monument area.

In Manitou Springs, a tree fell onto power lines early in the afternoon near Duclo Avenue and Modoc Place, which caused a utility pole to snap. A local television station reported some nearby residents temporarily lost power.

The Teller County Sheriff's Office said a wind-blown tree knocked down power lines about 1 p.m. in the far northwest corner of the county, north of Florissant, which sparked a 2-acre grass fire.

The fire was put out within an hour, but nearby residents were without power for about five hours, said Teller County Sgt. Greg Couch.

John Kalina, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Pueblo, said a wind gust of 55 miles an hour was recorded just before 1 p.m. at the Colorado Springs Airport, while another gust of 60 miles an hour was recorded about 4:15 p.m. five miles northeast of the Air Force Academy.

A high-wind warning was issued for areas of the Pikes Peak region above 11,000 feet until 11 a.m. Sunday, Kalina said.

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Contact Rich Laden: 636-0228

Twitter @richladen

Facebook Rich Laden

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