Drizzle, light rain hamper Friday morning commute

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Temperatures near the freezing mark along with a messy mix of drizzle and light freezing rain could make roads slick, which could slow Friday morning’s rush hour in the metro, before the temperature climbs to a high of 35 later in the day, according to the National Weather Service.

A hazardous weather outlook from the weather service was in effect Friday morning as a band of freezing rain and sleet works its way across western and central Minnesota into Wisconsin ahead of a cold front, resulting in icy patches.

Traffic came to a stop on Interstate 94 east of St. Cloud in the 6 a.m. hour after a semi jackknifed, FOX 9 reports. Spinouts have been a common sight on highways and county roads around the state all morning, FOX says.

The Weather Service says any ice accumulation in the Twin Cities likely will be light. The bad news: Precipitation could hit some areas before 8 a.m. when roads are laden with commuters, the Star Tribune notes.

On a scale of 1 to 10, KSTP meteorologist Dave Dahl puts the "hassle factor" at a 5 in the Twin Cities, forecasting scattered icy roads and slick spots on bridges and overpasses in particular.

Outside the metro, ice and precipitation made it difficult for drivers overnight. In west-central, central and northeastern Minnesota, light snow or freezing rain fell, the Star Tribune notes. Blowing snow was reported in south central Minnesota, where a band of heavy snow fell earlier this week. In west-central Minnesota, some Douglas County schools were delayed Friday morning due to slick roads or blowing snow, the Alexandria Echo Press reports.

In Duluth, the Weather Service reported that ice pellets fell Thursday night, but the forecast called for freezing rain to change to snow as a cold front arrives.

Friday's high temperatures in Minnesota will range from the middle teens in the Red River Valley to the upper 30s in southeastern Minnesota, the Weather Service says.

Warmer temps are on the way Sunday and Monday, after a cooler Saturday. For the metro:

A quick look around the state:

Ely
Friday: Wintry mix, high 30, low -4. Saturday: Mostly sunny, high 24, low 9. Sunday and Monday: High 39.

Winona
Friday: High 40, low 15. Saturday: Mostly sunny, high 29, low 11. Sunday: High 40. Monday: High 46.

Bemidji
Friday: Slight chance flurries, high 25, low -5. Saturday: Mostly sunny, high 23, low 11. Sunday and Monday: High 39.

Marshall
Friday: Wintry mix, high 33, low 4. Saturday: Mostly sunny, high 23, low 21. Sunday: High 42. Monday: High 43.

Moorhead
Friday: Blustery, high 19, low -5. Saturday: Mostly sunny, high 24, low 15. Sunday and Monday: High 40.

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