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Ice Storm in Kansas Causes Accidents, Outages

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File photo of icicles in a tree. (Photo by TAUSEEF MUSTAFA/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of icicles in a tree. (Photo by TAUSEEF MUSTAFA/AFP/Getty Images)

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HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — A slow-moving ice storm is causing headaches in much of central Kansas, knocking out power to hundreds of customers and sending vehicles off highways. At least one traffic death is blamed on the ice.

Temperatures plunged late Tuesday amid heavy rain, turning the precipitation to ice that continued to coat trees, power lines and bridges Wednesday afternoon.

Westar Energy reported about 1,500 customers without power at mid-afternoon. The biggest outages were reported in Reno, Sedgwick and Harvey counties.

Local law enforcement and the Kansas Highway Patrol responded to dozens of accidents.

The patrol reported that in north-central Kansas, 19-year-old Henry McWilliams of Rockwell, Texas, died around 5:20 a.m. Wednesday when his vehicle slid off an icy bridge. The crash happened on U.S. 81 near the town of Minneapolis.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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