California, 27 Dec (ONA) --- A major weekend storm caused whiteout conditions and closed key highways amid blowing snow in mountains of Northern California and Nevada in the US, with forecasters warning that travel in the Sierra Nevada could be difficult for several days.
Local authorities near Reno said three people were injured in a 20-car pileup on Interstate 395, where drivers described limited visibility. Further west, a 70-mile (112-kilometer) stretch of Interstate 80 was shut from Colfax, California, through the Lake Tahoe region to the Nevada state line.
The California Department of Transportation also closed many other roads while warning of slippery conditions for motorists.
The local weather service issued a winter storm warning for greater Lake Tahoe because of possible widespread whiteout conditions and wind gusts that could top 45 mph (72 kph).
In California, rockslides caused by heavy rain closed more than 40 miles (64 kilometers) of coastal Highway 1 in the Big Sur region south of the San Francisco Bay Area. There was no estimate for the reopening of the scenic stretch that is frequently shut after wet weather.
The latest in a series of blustery storms hit Southern California with heavy rain and wind that flooded streets and knocked down power lines late Saturday. Powerful gusts toppled trees, damaged carports, the Associated Press (AP) news reported.