April Brings A Dose Of Winter

April Snow in Kalispell, Montana. GD, 020402 AP

April began with a dose of winter across the Midwest as snow whipped Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin and caused more than 200 traffic accidents in the Twin Cities.

The storm caused at least six traffic deaths, including four in Iowa and two in Minnesota, officials said.

The storm dumped 3 to 6 inches of snow across central Minnesota and northeast Iowa and more than 2 inches in parts of Wisconsin on Monday. More light snow was expected Tuesday in Wisconsin, but it was not expected to accumulate, said Tom Helman, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Green Bay.

"It's going to be in bits and pieces. There's another piece of the system coming through," he said.

A 17-vehicle crash just north of Minneapolis-St. Paul killed Eldridge Daniel, 73, and his wife, Melva, 70. The couple were in a car that rammed into the back of a tractor-trailer. At least two other people were taken to a hospital — one with serious injuries, said Minnesota Department of Transportation spokesman Kevin Smith.

Dozens of people were injured in other traffic accidents, including a state trooper whose squad car was struck by a vehicle whose driver lost control on a slippery highway in western Minnesota. Sgt. Howard Hanson was treated for minor injuries at a North Dakota hospital.

One woman was critically injured in a car-truck crash on Interstate 94 near Hasty in central Minnesota that backed up traffic for miles.

The forecast was not welcome news for many expecting spring on April Fool's Day.

"It's April and I'm from Arizona and it should be done by now. I'm tired of it," said Naomi Evenson, a bartender in Green Bay.

The early-spring storm comes after an especially mild winter in many areas of the Midwest.

"After the winter we've had that wasn't a winter, it was really weird," said Donna Croxford, of Madison.

Meteorologists said a mixture of snow and rain would fall in southern parts of Wisconsin on Tuesday with temperatures ranging from around 30 in the north to near 40 in the south. Most of the snow was expected to melt.

In northeast Wyoming, heavy snow and howling winds shut down highways and sent residents scurrying for their snow shovels and winter clothing. Up to 8 inches of snow was expected by Tuesday morning in the Sundance area.

In Illinois, big, fluffy snowflakes snow mixed with rain caused minor accidents in the Chicago area and traffic headaches on area roadways.
  • Lloyd Vries

Comments

CBSN Live

pop-out
Live Video

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.