Three years ago today on January 9, 2017, a massive wind storm swept across Colorado Springs, leaving widespread damage in its wake.
The event was called a chinook wind, where warm air descends from the mountains and accelerates on the way down. Temperatures soared 20° above average that afternoon, reaching 60° in Colorado Springs, 64° in Pueblo, and 61° in Trinidad.
In Security, where the highest wind gust was measured at a whopping 103 mph, there were reports of windows being blown out of homes.
Power outages were widespread across the front range and numerous large, mature trees were uprooted.
High Wind Safety Tip | Postpone outdoor activities |Take cover indoors or under a shelter | stay away from power lines and trees pic.twitter.com/fzPWUtfcC0— CSFD PIO (@CSFDPIO) January 9, 2017
Fort Carson issued a “shelter in place” order and advised personnel to stay indoors. In addition, several business and city buildings closed.
Driving became a hazard for not only high profile vehicles, but for all drivers, with power lines down and "twisted" traffic lights.
Be careful crossing intersections--winds are still high. We've received reports of twisted traffic signal heads that can fall on roadways.— City of Colorado Springs (@CityofCOS) January 10, 2017
Flights were delayed at DIA, and some canceled at Colorado Springs Airport due to the high winds.
Some cancellations and delays due to the wind. Please check with your airline for official flight information. Be safe out there.— CO Springs Airport (@COSAirport) January 9, 2017
Roof damage was common across southern Colorado as pieces of building were torn off from the relentless wind.