Windy, wintery weather hits Western US; rain, snow snarl traffic

Image provided by San Bernardino Co. Fire Dept. shows traffic accident in San Bernardino Mountains in California. Rain throughout the West led to flooding, where five homeless people were trapped by water and had to be rescued from the Santa Ana River.

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- The National Weather Service says the Southwest U.S. can expect wintry weather to linger into Saturday, before heading east.

A low pressure front has dropped down from Alaska, followed closely by a high pressure system that has stirred up the fierce winds linked to three deaths Thursday in California.

In northern Utah, transportation officials are warning truck drivers of potential trailer-toppling gusts.

Meanwhile, snow in New Mexico and Arizona prompted some schools to delay opening Friday. A flood watch is in effect until early Saturday in the Phoenix area, where several miles of the Loop 303 freeway in the western suburbs were closed due to flooding. And in Tucson, firefighters recovered the body of a man who was swept away by high water in the Santa Cruz River.

Nevada has been getting a soaking too, with hundreds of traffic accidents reported.

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