ALBERT LEA, Minn. (WCCO) — Southern Minnesota is facing the brunt of the Groundhog Day snowstorm — school was canceled for kids in Rochester and Albert Lea.
I-90 closed Tuesday afternoon because of tough driving conditions, and the State Patrol has issued a no travel warning and closed all state highways in 10 southern Minnesota counties.READ MORE: Bemidji Police Seek Help Finding Teens Emily Luhm And Zoe Jones
Weather conditions deteriorated quickly, with hard winds and blowing snow. Cars and trucks ended up in ditches along I-35 between the two states.
They were conditions too treacherous, even for truckers like Joe Mendoza. He was hauling a load from Arkansas, but had to take shelter along with dozens of other big rigs.READ MORE: 50-Car Train Derails In Albert Lea, Police Ask Public To Avoid Area North Of Hawthorne Street
“I had a hard time getting off,” he said. “Slid a half mile down the ramp, because they haven’t plowed it yet.”
Highway plows couldn’t keep up with the fast-moving blizzard conditions. Trucker Byron Graves had good advice for other travelers.MORE NEWS: MN Weather Timeline: Hail Possible In Southeastern Minnesota Saturday, Warm Week Ahead
“Just take it easy,” he said.