Freezing rain leads to icy roads and sidewalks, school delays across much of Minnesota

A close up of a traffic sign with tiny icicles.
Rain freezes in tiny icicles off a traffic sign in West St. Paul on Monday morning.
Andrew Krueger | MPR News

Updated: 12:30 p.m.

Freezing rain across much of Minnesota and western Wisconsin early Monday led to icy roads and sidewalks, and delayed or canceled classes in many school districts.

Temperatures hovered around 32 degrees in the Twin Cities before sunrise Monday, allowing rain to freeze when it hit the ground in many areas. That made for a difficult morning commute for drivers and pedestrians.

The State Patrol said it responded to nearly 200 crashes and spinouts on Minnesota highways between 6 and 11 a.m.

Above-freezing temperatures were forecast for the metro through the afternoon, limiting the risk for further icing — though puddles and wet pavement could refreeze as temperatures drop Monday night.

Colder conditions were set to linger through the day in northern Minnesota and much of western Wisconsin.

The National Weather Service said ice accumulations may reach a quarter-inch from Moose Lake and Hinckley east into Wisconsin. The precipitation is forecast to change over to snow later Monday, with more than a half-foot possible on parts of the North Shore.

Winter weather advisories and winter storm warnings remain in effect for much of central and northern Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation reported icy roads across much of the state Monday morning. That prompted some school districts to delay or cancel classes.

Districts starting classes two hours late Monday included Brainerd, Cannon Falls, Forest Lake, Hastings, Pine Island and Wabasha-Kellogg, along with Hudson and River Falls in Wisconsin.

More school delays and closures from KARE 11.

The Red Wing, Moose Lake and St. Croix Falls (Wis.) school districts moved to an e-learning day. The Barnum and Carlton school districts closed Monday.

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport reported about 25 delayed flights and a handful of cancellations as of early afternoon.

Metro Transit reported delays on about a third of its Twin Cities bus routes at times on Monday morning, but conditions had improved by midday.

Xcel Energy reported more than 2,000 customers without power in its Minnesota service area at one point early Monday, but that number was back below 100 as of 8 a.m.

Forecast updates

Travel conditions

These state transportation departments offer live updates on road conditions and crashes:

For bus and light rail riders in the Twin Cities, Metro Transit offers weather-related updates on its Metro Transit and Metro Transit Alerts Twitter pages, as well as on its website.

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