Monday morning commute could be icy: More below-zero nights to come this week
Icy roads could plague drivers during the Monday morning commute. The National Weather Service in Duluth issued a winter weather advisory from 9 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3, through noon Monday for southern Cass, Crow Wing, Aitkin, southern Carlton and s...
Icy roads could plague drivers during the Monday morning commute.
The National Weather Service in Duluth issued a winter weather advisory from 9 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3, through noon Monday for southern Cass, Crow Wing, Aitkin, southern Carlton and southern St. Louis counties, predicting 1-3 inches of snow and about one-tenth of an inch of ice accumulation. The snow and freezing rain, meteorologist Kevin Huyck said, would start before 10 p.m. Sunday and likely cease between 9 a.m. and noon Monday.
"Any amount of ice is difficult for travel," Huyck cautioned, "especially with the recent stretch of cold weather, we've taken a lot of heat out of the ground under roads and sidewalks, parking lots, things like that. Anything that's been scraped clear of snow has lost that insulation."
Ice will easily accumulate on those surfaces, he added, and make for difficult driving and walking conditions if not treated with salt or sand.
With high temperatures expected in the teens Monday and Wednesday, and slightly lower Tuesday, Huyck said salting and scraping will likely be the right course of action and should take care of the ice over the next couple days.
After Sunday and Monday's precipitation, Huyck predicts temperatures to drop to around 10-15 below zero Monday night into Tuesday morning. Lows for Thursday and Friday are also expected to hit around 15 below zero, but it's nothing Minnesotans haven't dealt with before.
"We're looking at cold and wind chills that everybody should be accustomed to," Huyck said. "It's pretty common to have these values at one point or another during the winter up here."
With that said, Huyck advises everyone to take the usual cold weather precautions-bundle up when outside, cover up exposed skin, make sure exhaust pipes are clear of ice and snow if using natural gas for heat, and don't use gas-powered space heaters inside.
Temperatures may rise slightly for the second half of the weekend Sunday, Feb. 10, with highs predicted to reach the high teens, but lakes area residents shouldn't hold their breath for significantly warmer weather any time soon.
"For a more prolonged period of warmer weather, it looks like probably not for at least the next two weeks," Huyck said.
For the latest Minnesota road conditions, visit 511mn.org or call 511.