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No travel advised as dangerous Blizzard Brett blasts region

Blizzard Brett showed its face after all. Very strong winds - with gusts up to 50 mph - are causing dangerous white-out conditions and blowing and drifting snow over much of the Red River region. The National Weather Service's blizzard warning is...

National Weather Service forecast graphic
National Weather Service forecast graphic

Blizzard Brett showed its face after all.

Very strong winds - with gusts up to 50 mph - are causing dangerous white-out conditions and blowing and drifting snow over much of the Red River region. The National Weather Service's blizzard warning is through 6 tonight. No travel is advised, especially in open areas.

No travel is advised throughout all of North Dakota and much of northwest Minnesota, especially in open areas, according to state transportation departments and the weather service.

Interstate 29 has been closed from Grand Forks to the U.S.-Canada border, as has Manitoba's highway from that border to Winnipeg. No travel also was advised between Fargo and Jamestown on Interstate 94.

On the Minnesota side, U.S. Highway 2 is closed between East Grand Forks and Crookston.

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Many schools and businesses already have announced closings or delayed openings for the day. (See the severe weather announcements link accompanying this story and at the top of the GrandForksHerald.com homepage.) Grand Forks Public Schools are among the closed; East Grand Forks Public Schools already had been scheduled to not be in session today.

UND is closed today, although the Energy and Environmental Research Center on campus is not. And city garbage service was postponed because of the conditions. In Fargo, North Dakota State University is closing at 10 a.m., The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead reported.

At least five flights using Grand Forks International Airport have been canceled so far today, according to the airport's Web site.

The blizzard warning includes eastern North Dakota and parts of northwest and west-central Minnesota.

A winter storm warning remains in effect for Roseau, eastern Marshall, Beltrami, Clearwater and Lake of the Woods counties, among others, in northern Minnesota.

Don't expect the northwest to north winds to subside until this evening. They feature 25 to 35 mph winds with gusts to around 45 mph.

The weather service says one to four inches of snow is expected.

The air temperature continues to fall. At 8 a.m., it was 19 degrees colder than 24 hours earlier at Grand Forks International Airport, according to the weather service.

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A blizzard warning means "poor visibilities are likely. This will lead to whiteout conditions...making travel extremely dangerous. Do not travel," the weather service said in its statement.

The blizzard is named Brett by the Herald, which names the severe winter storms, after Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre. The decision is based in part on alphabetical order and was made before the weekend's NFC Championship game, which the Favre and the Vikings lost in overtime to the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans' Superdome.

The North Dakota Highway Patrol has suspended all oversize and overweight vehicle movements for southwest and south-central North Dakota because of ice buildup that's caused low-hanging powerlines and hazardous road conditions.

More than 2,500 people were without electricity in North Dakota on Monday morning, and about 7,800 were without power in South Dakota, The Associated Press reported. South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds has ask people to check on their neighbors, according to AP.

Related Topics: WEATHER
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