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Crashes Ring In The New Year

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(credit: Jupiter Images)

(credit: Jupiter Images)

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO/AP) – Icy roads ensured some Minnesotans had a memorable transition into 2011, with a number of crashes reported statewide.

According to Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske, there were 183 crashes reported in Minnesota as of 7 a.m. Saturday. Of those, 90 were in the Twin Cities metro area. The winter storm affected the western and northern portions of the state more acutely than it did Minneapolis-St. Paul.

Additionally, 188 incidents of spinouts or cars going off the road were reported.

No fatalities have been reported, but there were 34 reported injuries statewide, one being described as “serious.” Fourteen of those injury accidents were within the Twin Cities metro area.

As for New Year’s revelry, there were 30 reported DWIs throughout Minnesota between noon Friday and 7 a.m. Saturday. That’s about on par with the numbers from last year.

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With another snowstorm blowing into Minnesota, the state Public Safety and Transportation departments are urging motorists to practice safe winter driving skills.

Among their winter driving tips are be buckled up and to make sure child restraints are secured tight and properly.

Motorists should drive at safe speeds according to road conditions, and plan for additional travel time.

With the possibility of icy roads, drivers should increase their safe stopping distance between vehicles. And motorists should keep at least five car-lengths behind snowplows.

Keep snow and ice cleared from windows, hoods, headlights, brake lights and turn signals. Minnesota officials remind drivers their headlights must be turned on when it is snowing or sleeting. And don’t use cruise control on snowy, icy or wet roads.

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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