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...BLIZZARD CONDITIONS LIKELY OVER SOUTHWESTERN MINNESOTA THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT... ...AREAS OF FREEZING RAIN THIS MORNING WITH WIDESPREAD WINTRY PRECIPITATION THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT WITH SNOW RATES OF 1 TO 2 INCHES PER HOUR POSSIBLE... .A complex storm system developing over the Rockies will shift east into the Central Plains tonight then gradually move into the Great Lakes Friday night. Precipitation will continue this morning as rain or freezing rain, depending on surface temperatures. A light icing to a tenth of an inch of ice accretion is likely mainly north of a line from Redwood Falls to Buffalo MN to Rice Lake WI. The precipitation will then gradually change over to snow this afternoon through tonight, which could be heavy at times. Snowfall amounts should range from 5 to 8 inches in a swath from the Madison and Canby MN areas eastward through the Twin Cities metro and continuing through most of western Wisconsin, with locally higher totals possible. 2 to 4 inches are expected from the St Cloud area northward and from the Mankato area southward. In addition, strong winds will develop late this morning which will persist through Friday night. Blizzard conditions are likely west of a line from Benson to Hector to New Ulm to Madelia. Near blizzard conditions are possible eastward to the Interstate 35 corridor. A Winter Weather Advisory is in place for much of western and central Minnesota into northwest Wisconsin for freezing rain this morning. A Blizzard Warning is in place for portions of southwestern Minnesota this afternoon through tonight. A Winter Storm Warning remains in place to the east of the Blizzard Warning for central, eastern and southern Minnesota through western Wisconsin this afternoon through tonight. For those counties not currently in a Blizzard Warning, conditions will be close to blizzard conditions and warnings may still be issued even with lighter snow accumulations. ...WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 7 PM THIS EVENING TO 7 AM CDT SATURDAY... * WHAT...Snow and blowing snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 5 to 8 inches. Winds gusting as high as 45 mph. * WHERE...Portions of east central, south central and southeast Minnesota and west central Wisconsin. * WHEN...From 7 PM this evening to 7 AM CDT Saturday. * IMPACTS...Travel could be very difficult. Widespread blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility. Gusty winds could bring down tree branches. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency. The latest road conditions for the state you are calling from can be obtained by calling 5 1 1. Road conditions can also be found at 511mn.org for Minnesota or 511wi.gov for Wisconsin. &&
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