Winter’s chill, snow may stick around

By Thomas Garcia Quay County Sun

Quay County residents were expected to wake up today to temperatures between 15 and 25 degrees, said National Weather Service meteorogical technician Raymond Jojale.

It is expected to be the lowest temperature recorded so far this winter season.

The low comes in the wake of the season’s first snowfall, when between one and three inches fell in Quay County, according to NWS reports.

Residents may see more snow fall. “The heaviest deposits will fall according to how the storm rotates,” Jojale said.

There will be a chance for light snowfall and the highs will range from the mid-30s to low-40s until Monday, Jojale said. Later in the week, on Wednesday night there is a slight chance of another snow shower but the daily highs are expected be in the upper 40s to mid-50s by Thursday, Jojale said.

A cold Thanksgiving Day, when the high was 36 degrees, was caused by a winter storm system that moved in from the east. Snow began to fall at 10:53 p.m. on Thursday, Jojale said.

Thanksgiving Day’s low was an abrupt change from Tuesday when the NWS recorded a high of 80 degrees in Tucumcari.

Despite the bad weather there were only two accidents in two days along I-40, said New Mexico State Police Sgt. Brandon Henderson.
I-40 was shut down as a result of one of the accidents, Henderson said. On Friday, a semitrailer traveling eastbound on I-40 slid off into the medium and jackknifed, Henderson said. The interstate was shut down from 2:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. for the clean up, Henderson said.

“Usually with the first snow of the season, we have a lot of accidents,” Henderson said. “It is pretty good to have only two accidents in two days. The interstate was closed for a few hours but that was only for accident clean up.”

From Thursday through Friday afternoon, the state police had not made any arrests for DWI, Henderson said. DWI checkpoints are still planned throughout Quay County over the weekend, he said.

A review of the incident reports at the Tucumcari Police Department indicates that they also had no DWI arrests from Thursday through Friday afternoon.