Storm paralyzes city of Sturgis, residents urged to stay home

2013-10-05T18:56:00Z 2013-10-09T15:02:18Z Storm paralyzes city of Sturgis, residents urged to stay homeDeb Holland Meade County Times-Tribune staff Rapid City Journal

Heidi Mayer Kruse has lived in Fargo, N.D. and eastern South Dakota, but she says she has never experienced a storm such as the one that buried their Blucksberg-addition home Friday.

"It's chest deep consistently over our driveway," she said. Kruse and her family were without power most of Friday and into Saturday.

"It was 39 degrees in our living room before power came back on this morning," Kruse said Saturday.

Trees are down in areas surrounding the Kruse's home and a large branch is on their roof.

Kruse, like many of her neighbors in the subdivision south of Sturgis, is amazed at the ferocity of the storm.

"Having lived in areas that experience rough winters, I can say with authority - this was a beast of a storm," she said.

Sturgis City Manager Daniel Ainslie said city crews have been very busy. They asked residents Saturday morning to stay home so that crews could plow the streets.

"The heavy snow as well as debris and disabled vehicles are making plowing difficult," Ainslie said.

Fire crews and other city staff helped move snow drifts away from windows at Sturgis Regional Hospital on Friday night.

"The hospital lost several windows before our crews arrived," he said.

The Sturgis Ambulance crew and all-terrain Mat-Trac vehicles were used Friday night to transport patients and to deliver oxygen to residents who were snowed in.

"For quite some time, the four-wheel drive ambulance helped, but now we can only use the Mat-Trac," he said.

City crews are working to plow the main roads, but downed power lines, broken branches and heavy snow make it slow going, he said.

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