UPDATE: Blizzard Causing Road Closures, Event Cancellations
The Minnesota Department of Transportation has closed portions of Interstate 90 and Highway 60 due to blizzard conditions. These closures will remain in effect until further notice.
The locations of gate closures includes:
- Interstate 90 at Jackson, west to the South Dakota border
- Highway 60 from St. James to Worthington – 10:00 a.m.
- Highway 60 from Mankato to St. James – 11:00 a.m.
- Interstate 90 from Blue Earth to Jackson – 11:00 a.m.
Other state highways will be closing in the following counties: Rock, Nobles, Jackson, Cottonwood, Watonwan, western Brown and Martin. Check www.511mn.org for these additional closures.
Motorists are advised not to travel until conditions improve and MnDOT reopens the roads.
Motorists should plan accordingly. When a road is closed it is illegal to travel in that area. Motorists can be fined up to $1,000 and/or sentenced to 90 days in jail. In addition, if travelers need to be rescued from a closed road, other expenses and penalties will apply.
ORIGINAL STORY: Much of southern Minnesota and northern Iowa are under a blizzard warning as more snow and very strong winds will move through Saturday. The Minnesota Department of Transportation advises no travel parts of southwest Minnesota. Roads are extremely icy and blowing snow is limiting visibility.
The wintry weather is also causing many events to be canceled or postponed. In fact, there are too many to list. The best advise is to either call ahead or just stay home.
MN DOT says it is anticipated that other counties will be added to the no travel advisory as the winter storm continues.
You can view winter road conditions from real-time plow cameras available through the www.511mn.org website.
MN DOT says in southcentral Minnesota there are 83 snowplows that work to state highways in the 13-county MN DOT District 7. In southcentral Minnesota, MN DOT plows 3,325 lane miles. An average route for drivers is 34 miles. MN DOT snowplow operators doing their part to make highways safe.
MN DOT wants motorists should remember to:
• Check road conditions at www.511mn.org or call 511; it takes time to get roads back to good driving conditions.
• Be patient and remember snowplows are working to improve road conditions for your trip.
• Stay back at least 10 car lengths behind the plow, far from the snow cloud.
• Stay alert for snowplows that turn or exit frequently and often with little warning. Plows may also travel over centerlines or partially into traffic to further improve road conditions.
• Slow down to a safe speed for current conditions. Snowplows typically move at slower speeds.