(CNN) An intense and ferocious winter storm — a “bomb cyclone” — is expected to bring hurricane-force wind gusts, blizzard conditions and a flood threat across a swath of the US heartland Wednesday. A bomb cyclone occurs when there is a rapid pressure drop, falling at least 24 millibars (which measures atmospheric pressure) over 24 hours known as bombogenesis. The massive storm is expected to wallop

areas including the Rockies, Central/Northern Plains to the Upper Midwest with blizzard conditions and winds that could blow from 50 to 70 miles per hour. Other hazards include heavy snow and severe storms with possible tornadoes and flooding. Blizzard and winter storm warnings are in effect for portions of Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska and South Dakota. Heavy snow is expected in portions of the Rockies and northern Plains, including Denver into Thursday. READ MORE

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