The State Patrol is urging drivers in northern Otter Tail and southern Becker counties to be extra cautious Monday morning as freezing rain has made roadways treacherous.
As sleet came down in the metro Sunday afternoon, road crews prepared for what could be a messy Monday commute. According to the Minnesota Department of Transportation, temperature is key because it’s expected to hover overnight between 30 and 35 degrees — right around freezing.
At least five people died in crashes on icy highways as 1 to 2 inches of snow fell across much of southern Minnesota this weekend.
Crews across the state are working to clear the roads before ice becomes a bigger problem. The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) says the timing of the storm made things tough Monday morning. They pre-treated several roads, but Mother Nature usually wins.
Icy roads and this winter’s dangerous driving conditions are creating a new problem. With the huge number of crashes this winter, auto repair shops are swamped. Many repair shops are now telling customers they will have to wait four to six weeks before they can even start working on their car or truck.
Icy conditions were a major factor in a broadside crash west of the Twin Cities Tuesday night that killed on driver and sent another to the hospital, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.
One person is in critical condition after a crash Monday morning that’s being partially blamed on the icy road conditions.
Carleton College is mourning the deaths of three students killed in a crash on icy roads. The fatal crash happened Friday while the young men were riding in an SUV just north of campus on Highway 3. The State Patrol says their vehicle spun out of control and right into the path of an oncoming semi.
Last week’s storm was nasty by most Minnesotans’ standards, but road salt researchers at Minnesota State University in Mankato think it was perfect. Civil engineering professor Steve Druschel and two of his students went under a bridge to collect samples of murky road melt from the highway above.
The roads shouldn’t be as miserable around the Twin Cities as they were during Friday’s awful commute, but Monday may still bring with it a number of headaches. The good news is that most road conditions are better, but there are still some problem areas.
It’s been nearly two days since a winter storm hit the Twin Cities and other parts of Minnesota, but driving conditions remain extremely difficult on many roads. Officials said there is some improvement in road conditions as of Saturday morning, but not much.
Body shops are a busy place to be after that first major snow and ice combination of the year. They’re busy now, and it will likely stay that way until spring. Bob and Carl’s Auto Body and Glass in Osseo looks like a car infirmary, with broken headlights, missing taillights and everything in between. Tony Smith, co-owner at Bob & Carl’s, says the work is piling up. “Still spinning out and we’re still getting work,” Smith said. “Cars are being towed in.”
The Twin Cities is preparing for a messy weekend as another winter storm is set to pass through Minnesota from Friday night through midday Sunday.
A freezing fog advisory has been issued for most of Minnesota from late Saturday night through Sunday morning, reports the National Weather Service (NOAA).
Metro motorists were suddenly and unexpectedly thrown into winter mode on Monday morning. According to the State Patrol, at least 50 spinouts and fender-benders were reported by late Monday morning.