3 inches of snow fallsPublished 9:35am Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Plows hit the pavement early in Albert Lea this morning, in an attempt to clear 3 inches of new snow that had fallen overnight, before the morning commute.
Two to 3 more inches of snow were expected to arrive before the storm tapers off this afternoon.
People were out early today clearing sidewalks.
According to the National Weather Service, by 7 a.m. today Ellendale received the most snow in the area covered by the Chanhassen bureau, with 3 1/2 inches. North Mankato received 2 1/2 inches of new snow while Red Wing received 1 inch and Minneapolis received four-fifths of an inch.
While roads were slick in some spots around Albert Lea, there were no school delays in Freeborn County. The Minnesota Department of Transportation reported that driving conditions were difficult due to heavy snow on U.S. Highways 65 and 69 and Interstates 90 and 35. No crashes had been reported by the Minnesota State Patrol as of press time.
At 7 a.m. today, snow continued to fall in Albert Lea. Visibility was about 2 miles at the Albert Lea Airport and the temperature was 30 degrees. A high of 31 degrees was predicted for today with cloudy skies and winds ranging from 10 to 15 mph. On Thursday, the high was again expected to reach 31 degrees with partly sunny skies.
Freeborn County remained in a winter weather advisory until 3 p.m. today. Up to 5 inches of snow was expected to fall in an area stretching from Albert Lea up to Red Wing and over to Eau Claire, Wis.
Snow began falling in Albert Lea around 6 p.m. Tuesday. By about 9 p.m., larger flakes had turned into light snow that looked more like rain as it fell.
According to Rick Ashling, who submits Albert Lea’s snowfall data taken at the wastewater treatment plant to the Chanhassen bureau of the National Weather Service, only traces of new snow accumulation had been recorded for March before Tuesday’s new snow moved in.