Region braces for second major storm later todayA winter storm dumped 5-12 inches of new snow from southeastern North Dakota into Minnesota's lakes country before leaving the region this morning, according to the National Weather Service. Residents are now preparing for a second major storm expected to hit the region by this evening.
By: Herald Staff Report, Grand Forks Herald
Snowplows were out early this morning clearing major roadways in Grand Forks from overnight snow from the first of two major storms this week.
Just as communities are digging themselves out from the first storm, one that mostly missed Grand Forks, but socked other areas with snow, residents were preparing for a second major winter storm forecast to hit the region late this afternoon.
This morning Interstate 29 was still closed between Grand Forks and the South Dakota border and I-29 north of Grand Forks was open, but no travel was advised.
Interstate 94 reopened between Moorhead and Alexandria, Minn., this morning. But I-94 remained closed from Jamestown, N.D., to Fargo in North Dakota.
Highway 2 reopened between East Grand Forks and Crookston this morning, but road conditions were still not great. Other parts of Highway 2 were open, but no travel was advised between Grand Forks and Lakota, N.D.
A number of businesses in the Fargo area are closed today, including West Acres mall.
Blizzard Casey blanketed the region with snow, gusting winds and led to the closures of a number of highways and interstates on Thursday.
The winter storm dumped 5-12 inches of new snow from southeastern North Dakota into Minnesota's lakes country before leaving the region this morning, according to the National Weather Service. Visibility is expected to improve as winds diminish throughout the day today, but travel may still be hazardous in many parts of the region.
The second storm is expected to cross into southeastern North Dakota and west central Minnesota at mid afternoon today and continue moving north across North Dakota and Minnesota into Canada. The second storm will spread into the northern and central Red River Valley tonight, bringing blizzard conditions and winds of 30-45 mph tonight into Saturday morning. Less strong winds are expected from east of Roseau to Thief River Falls and down to Detroit Lakes, Minn., and Fergus Falls, Minn.
The storm is expected to bring 2-9 inches of snow with the heaviest amounts forecast near a line from Fargo to Bemidji. Bemidji was forecast to receive less than half an inch of snow this morning, mostly before 9 a.m. today, before the expected arrival of 4-8 inches of new snow tonight as the second storm arrives. Another 1-3 inches of snow is possible for Bemidji on New Year's Day.
Much of the region was under a blizzard warning on Thursday and another blizzard warning will take effect for much of the area starting at 6 p.m. tonight. A winter weather advisory for blowing snow and low wind chills remains in effect until the blizzard warning starts. A winter storm warning is in effect for parts of Minnesota east of Thief River Falls and Bemidji.
Wind chills of 25 to 35 below can be expected today.
Those traveling are asked to use caution and bring survival kits with them.