Blizzard warning extended
10:50 p.m. Update
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - The blizzard warning was extended to 3 a.m. Tuesday.
3:15 p.m. Update
WORTHINGTON - The City of Worthington is reportedly pulling its plows from the road.
2:55 p.m. Update
MANKATO - The Minnesota Dept. of Transportation and the Minnesota State Patrol are closing all state highways in south central and southwest Minnesota, including Interstate 90 from the South Dakota border to Albert Lea at 3:30 p.m. until further notice.
Mn/DOT will pull its snowplows off the roads, which may become impassable.
Counties impacted include Cottonwood, Jackson, Nobles and Rock, as well as Blue Earth, Brown, Faribault, Martin, Nicollet, Waseca and Watonwan.
When a road is closed it is illegal to travel on it. Motorists may be fined up to $1,000 and/or 90 days in jail. In addition, if travelers need to be rescued from a closed road, other expenses and penalties will apply.
Motorists are advised not to travel until conditions improve and Mn/DOT crews clear the roads.
For updated information, call 511 or click on www.511mn.org.
2:30 p.m. Update
WORTHINGTON - All county and state roads in the area are expected to be closed within an hour, Nobles County deputy Jay Clarke stated at 2:30 p.m. today.
Nobles County pulled its plows from the road at noon.
2:28 p.m. Update
WINDOM - Interstate 90 westbound is closed to traffic from the South Dakota state line to Exit 12 in Minnesota, due to numerous accidents and reduced visibility, until 3 p.m. today.
Minnesota 62 is closed from U.S. 59 to Minnesota 60 due to white-out conditions.
U.S. 71 is closed from the Iowa state line to just before Jackson County Road 34 due to white-out conditions.
Minnesota Dept. of Transportation is discussing additional road closures.
2:20 p.m. Update
WINDOM - Minnesota 60 is closed from Jackson County Road 24 to U.S. 71, due to white-out conditions.
Additionally, U.S. 71 is closed from Minnesota 60 to U.S. 14 due to white-out conditions and blowing snow.
A wind advisory remains in effect until 3 a.m. Tuesday, with gusts of up to 45 miles per hour expected.
1:25 p.m. Update
WINDOM - The Minnesota Department of Transportation advised no travel in south central and southwest Minnesota until further notice due to hazardous driving conditions.
Strong winds are creating white-out conditions in many areas and are not expected to decrease until tomorrow.
Mn/DOT's recommendation joins an earlier request from the National Weather Service asking people to avoid travel.
Highway 14 from Sleepy Eye to New Ulm closed at approximately 12:30 p.m. due to a serious multi-vehicle crash. The road will remain closed until further notice.
Visibility was reportedly zero on Fox Farm Road in Worthington at approximately 1:10 p.m., and in many other locations in southwest Minnesota visibility dropped to 5 feet. Several vehicles were reportedly stuck on Fox Farm Road.
A serious accident was reported at approximately 12:25 p.m. on Interstate 90, between exit 5 and exit 12, and rescue workers expected to be on the scene for approximately 2 hours.
At least one vehicle was reportedly stuck in the eastbound lane of Minnesota 60 approximately halfway between Worthington and Brewster at about 1:24 p.m.
1:15 p.m. Update
WORTHINGTON - Highway 14 from Sleepy Eye to New Ulm was closed around 12:30 p.m. due to a serious multi-vehicle crash. The road will remain closed until further notice.
1:10 p.m. Update
WORTHINGTON - Visibility is reportedly zero on Fox Farm Road. In other southwest Minnesota locations it has dropped to 5 feet or less.
Several vehicles are reportedly stuck on Fox Farm Road.
A serious accident has been reported between exit 5 and exit 12 on Interstate 90. Rescue workers expected to be on the scene for approximately 2 hours.
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - A blizzard warning has been issued for Lyon and Dickinson counties in Iowa and Murray, Cottonwood, Nobles and Jackson counties in Minnesota, set to expire at 9 p.m. tonight. The National Weather Service advises no travel in this counties.
Additionally, a winter weather advisory has been issued for Pipestone and Rock counties in Minnesota, set to expire at 6 p.m. tonight.
An intense wind gradient between low pressure across the Great Lakes and high pressure in the lee of the northern Rockies will produce gusty northwest winds of 30 to 45 miles per hour across the region. These winds will produce considerable blowing and drifting snow, with severely reduced visibilities, especially in open areas where periods of near zero visibility are expected.
As areas of snowfall wrap southward across the area through this evening, blowing snow will combine with falling snow to result in more widespread whiteout conditions across southwest Minnesota and much of northwest Iowa. An additional inch or so of new snowfall is expected across southwest Minnesota and into parts of northwest Iowa, with lesser amounts to the west.
Timing: Strong winds will continue to produce widespread blowing snow with whiteout or near whiteout conditions at times, especially during times of falling snow. As the strongest wind and light snow gradually tapers off this evening, the widespread blowing snow is expected to end.
Wind and Visibility: Strong gusty northwest winds of 30 to 40 miles per hour will create areas of blowing snow, at times reducing visibilities to near zero, especially in open areas.
Precautions: A blizzard warning means severe winter weather conditions are expected or occurring. Falling and blowing snow with strong winds and poor visibilities are likely. This will lead to whiteout conditions, making travel extremely dangerous, the National Weather Service warned.
People are advised not to travel. If they must, they should bring a winter survival kit and stay with the vehicle if stranded.
Winter Weather Advisory
A winter weather advisory for snow and blowing snow means that visibility will be limited due to a combination of falling and blowing snow. People are urged to use caution when driving, especially in open areas.