As winds pick up throughout the southeastern part of the state, the New Mexico Department of Transportation has closed off the segment of the relief route between West Brasher Road and Sunset Avenue southwest of Roswell, according to Todd Wildermuth, public information officer for the city of Roswell.
The portion of the relief route was closed off Wednesday because wind-blown debris from the nearby municipal landfill and concrete-crushing plants can reduce visibility and create dangerous driving conditions. Traffic is temporarily being detoured onto Brasher and Sunset.
The landfill and the Spring River Zoo have also closed due to the fierce winds.
A major crash was already reported to have happened in Dexter, according to the Facebook page of Dexter Fire & Rescue. The cause and location of the crash was not reported, but the post states that visibility is extremely limited on nearly all roads.
Travel is discouraged unless absolutely necessary, according to the post.
In Hagerman, the Central Valley Electric Cooperative has received reports of power outages in some rural areas of Chaves County. Substations in Dexter, Lake Arthur and Cottonwood are reportedly down.
Mike Anderson, finance and administration manager for Central Valley Electric, said the first calls about power outages came in at about 9 a.m. Wednesday. He added that the cause of the outages is not known, but they are believed to be related to the heavy winds.
Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.