As much snow as Billings has gotten this winter, it took frigid wind chill predictions to cancel school. Billings Public Schools will not have school on Tuesday because of expected cold weather.
Superintendent Terry Bouck cited wind chill forecasts down to -40 degrees in calling off school.
"It's really the temperature," he said. "We have 95 buses that deliver a whole lot of our kids."
The National Weather Service is predicting that wind chill values will be as low as -30 in Billings on Tuesday morning with wind speeds picking up.
Billings’ record to-date snowfall once again activated residential snowplowing Thursday morning, and the growing tab to pay private operators …
Billings' snowfall is on a record-breaking pace this year, but Bouck said road conditions weren't a big factor in canceling school.
"We were confident that the buses could get around; we were confident that people could get around," he said.
A decision about Wednesday classes will be made Tuesday morning, and the district aims to inform parents and teachers as soon as possible, he said.
Temperatures are supposed to increase into the teens on Wednesday, but breezy winds are expected to remain.
Lockwood, Canyon Creek, Elysian, Pioneer, Independent and Blue Creek, all K-8 districts, are also canceling school. Shepherd and Huntley Project schools also canceled for Tuesday.
The Boys and Girls Clubs of Yellowstone County are closing their clubhouses and the Yellowstone West Preschool in Laurel will be closed.
Laurel is planning on having school, according to Superintendent Linda Filpula.
Snow piling up
If February has seemed particularly backbreaking, it's because Billings hasn't seen this much snow by the 18th of the month — ever.
As of Sunday night, at least 31.5 inches of snow has fallen during the month. That's a few inches short of the February record of 37 inches, and we still have 10 days left in the month.
Heavy snowfall in the Billings area let up later Friday afternoon, but overnight temperatures were expected to plunge to well below zero and w…
That record February wasn't ancient history, either. It was 2014.
That February recorded 2.06 inches of moisture. By last Sunday, this month was at 1.59 inches, according to the National Weather Service. The normal amount for the month is 0.29 inches.
For the snow year so far, measured from July 1, snowfall stands at 76 inches, which is about 44 inches above normal.
The 2017-2018 snow season is still behind the winter of 2013-2014 that got 103.5 inches, the highest season on record.