Highways close, stranded motorist rescued in storm

Gusty winds are gradually calming after creating white-out conditions and closing highways in northwestern Minnesota.


The blinding snows closed dozens of schools. Crookston, Alexandria and Fergus Falls are among school districts that told students to stay home Thursday. Here in northern Iowa, several schools called for half days. Many businesses and community functions also closed for the evening. Three wrestling quads also cancelled their meets and the only basketball games scheduled for the area also postponed.


Two jackknifed semis on Interstate 94 between Alexandria and Osakis prompted MnDOT to shut down that portion of the highway from mid-morning to early afternoon.


Morris recorded a wind gust of 52 miles per hour just before noon while Appleton had a gust of 49 miles per hour.


Two Kennedy firefighters rescued a driver stranded on Highway 11 after he ran off the road and ran out of gas early Thursday. Kittson County Sheriff’s jailer Tim Nordine tells the Star Tribune that people risked their lives by going out in the storm to get him.