Highways in western Minnesota remained closed into Friday afternoon, hours after the worst of a blizzard blew through that part of the state.
I-94 from Moorhead to the MN 108 exit near Rothsay is still listed as closed on MnDOT's 511 site as of 3:40 p.m.. MN 210 from about Breckenridge to Fergus Falls stayed closed until about 3:40 p.m., at which point the closure notice disappeared.
Conditions are much improved from earlier, when authorities had issued a no travel advisory for much of the region. But it's not quite back to normal.
State Patrol Sgt. Jesse Grabow offered an explanation: Crews are still clearing crashed and spun-out vehicles off those highways. He also shared a video and some photos to give people an idea of conditions.
The State Patrol reported 90 crashes, 112 spin outs and vehicles off the road, and nine jackknifed semis from 5-11:30 a.m. Friday. MnDOT's 511 map shows some roads are still completely covered in that portion of the state, while most are partially covered.
The original story from Friday morning is below.
Interstate 94 and other highways in west-central Minnesota are closed due to poor visibility Friday morning.
Here's a map of where travel isn't advised and where highways are closed, as of 9 a.m. Friday:
The highways closing comes after the Minnesota Department of Transportation recommended no travel in most of the northwestern and west-central Minnesota Friday morning due to extremely dangerous whiteout conditions.
This video was taken by State Patrol Sgt. Jesse Grabow at 7 a.m. between Barnesville and Rothsay on Interstate 94. Grabow reported "at least a dozen vehicles/semis in the ditch/median, maybe more."
"As of 7 am, travel was not advised within the majority of the Red River Valley, with some road closures. This is due to treacherous travel conditions from blizzard conditions and slick roadways," says the National Weather Service.
"If planning travel this morning, make sure to check the latest road conditions before heading out or consider delaying or cancelling travel through the morning."
There is a blizzard warning in effect until 12 p.m. Friday. Winds are expected to gust up to 50 mph, causing not only dangerous travel conditions but also dangerously cold wind chills as low as -35F.
"The dangerously cold wind chills as low as 35 below zero could cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 10 minutes," the NWS said.