Big storm smashes US Plains and Midwest


A massive snow storm pummelled the US Plains and Midwest Thursday causing flight delays, shutting down schools and disrupting traffic.


Chip Somodevilla

A massive winter storm hit the US Plains and Midwest on Thursday, dropping more than one foot of snow in some places.

Kansas and Missouri bore the brunt of the storm that closed schools, cut power to some, and caused hazardous driving conditions.

Numerous flights were also canceled and Kansas' international airport was closed.

Reuters said that the storm also caused thunderstorms in warmer climates in Georgia and Texas.

Thunder accompanied snow in Kansas city, the news agency reported, despite dropping two to three inches per hour.

More from GlobalPost: Massive winter storm blankets central US

Chicago is also expecting several inches of snow.

The Chicago Tribune said it could be the worst storm since the winter of 2011 when the region was smashed by the "Groundhog Day blizzard."

States of emergency were declared both in Missouri and Kansas due to the hazardous traveling conditions and the need for officials to begin cleaning up.

Fox News said there is also a significant risk in tornado activity.

The first death from the storm was 18-year-old Cody Alexander of Alex, Okla., who died when his truck slid and collided with oncoming traffic, reported the Associated Press.