3 to 6 Inches of Snow in Southeastern Minnesota
Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) - The snowfall totals from the winter storm that arrived in the region on Friday were not as high as predicted, but the precipitation still caused major travel headaches. The latest precipitation reports from the National Weather Service indicate the heaviest snow fell in southwestern Minnesota, where 10 inches was reported along the Iowa border in Jackson County. There were also reports of around 7 inches of accumulation in the Worthington area.
In this region, the heaviest snow hit southern areas of the Twin Cities, with 6.5 inches reported in Bloomington and numerous reports of a half a foot of accumulation in Dakota County. As of around 9 AM Saturday, the highest snowfall total in the Rochester area was in Wabasha County at 6 inches. 5 inches was reported in Harmony while about 3.8 inches fell at the Rochester airport.
The Minnesota State Patrol says the storm has contributed to almost 500 traffic crashes throughout the state, along with over 340 reports of spin outs and vehicles leaving roadways. The crash tally includes 45 incidents that resulted in injuries and one fatal crash near Brainerd. In that case, a 62-year-old Brainerd man was killed when his car collided with a semi-truck. The State Patrol’s Rochester district has responded to 49 storm-related traffic crashes and 48 vehicles off the road. Three of the crashes resulted in injuries.
Hazardous travel conditions are expected to persist into Sunday as the low pressure center responsible for the storm produces strong northwest winds that are predicted to cause considerable blowing and drifting snow throughout the southern half of Minnesota. The winds will also produce dangerously cold wind chills Saturday night and Sunday morning. The National Weather Service has issued a wind chill warning from 6 PM Saturday through noon on Sunday with forecasters predicting the actual temperature will drop to -20 or colder and the wind chills reaching the -42 to -45 degree range.