Winter Storm Warning for Sierra Starts Friday

Don’t leave your car running in the driveway and other tips for dealing with cold-weather hassles

Another winter storm was on the way to the region.

It's only the fourth time the area has seen 6 inches of snow since 1991.

More than 15 million people across the Western United States were under winter storm alerts Saturday morning, according to CNN meteorologist Haley Brink.

Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency, saying everyone in the state should focus on staying safe.

There's more snow expected later in the week as well.

Climate scientist Cliff Mass warns of a storm bigger than anything we've seen this week for Tuesday, labeling it "the Big Kahuna of snow". "This is a ideal morning to bundle up and play in the snow, but stay off the roads if possible", he tweeted Saturday.

More than 60,000 people lost power during the blizzard, which triggered major travel disruptions including hundreds of canceled flights and the closure of a 20-mile stretch of Interstate 90 in central Washington due to spin-outs and poor visibility.

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Around 180 people spent the night in an emergency shelter set up in Seattle Center and officials on Saturday went out to get homeless residents to safety. Only drivers collecting or delivering bulk milk products or de-icing road salt from that agency's locations are exempt, the governor said.

Those stuck at home are taking a lighter tone to the city's reaction and the residents' preparedness.

In California, more than 120 visitors and staff members were rescued Thursday in a Sierra Nevada resort after being trapped by up to seven feet of snow. Wind gusts could reach anywhere from 20 to 30 miles per hour in the Seattle area, while the northern Puget Sound and Olympic region could see gusts of 60 miles per hour.

"The stronger portions of the storm hits Saturday afternoon through Sunday evening, with a winter storm watch up for Reno and the Truckee Meadows where 1-6" of snow is possible through Sunday evening.

Seattle's high is forecast for 35 degrees Fahrenheit with the normal high 49 degrees, CNN's Brink said.

In Seattle, where such snow is a rarity, residents cleared out grocery store shelves and left work early Friday afternoon as the storm arrived.

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