PIERRE, S.D. - National Guard troops are helping utility crews pull equipment through the heavy, wet snow to install new electricity poles in South Dakota, where more than 22,000 homes and businesses remain without power after a record-breaking storm that dumped 4 feet of snow in western parts of the state.
The weekend storm was part of a powerful weather system that also buried parts of Wyoming and Colorado with snow, and spawned destructive tornadoes in Nebraska and Iowa. At least four deaths have been attributed to the weather, including a South Dakota man who collapsed while cleaning snow off his roof.
Meanwhile, cattle ranchers are trying to assess how many of their animals died during the unseasonably early blizzard. The South Dakota Stockgrowers Association.says ranchers are reporting losing between 20 percent and 50 percent of their herds.
Temperatures in the Rapid City area were expected to warm into the 60s today to continue melting the heavy snow.