First half of April coldest on record

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Benson plows were clearing city streets Sunday.
With more than 7 inches of snow and ice over the weekend, and 17 inches of snow this month, Benson High School spring sports are on hold.

For a while Friday evening it appeared the area had missed the big snowfall that was predicted to come with the weekend blizzard. After some freezing rain, ice pellets and snow late Friday afternoon the precipitation stopped. But the spring snowstorm was just getting started.

“A significant winter storm will develop this afternoon and continue through Saturday night. All precipitation types, strong winds, and blizzard conditions will occur in this winter storm,” the National Weather Service forecast.  “A Blizzard Warning is in effect tonight through Saturday evening for west central and south central Minnesota.”

The NWS forecast was showing a 75 percent of the area getting between 9 to 11 inches of snow.

Though Friday night’s accumulation was small, Saturday it snowed all day with the Benson area getting close to 7 inches. However, the area missed the worst of the storm as it slid south.

Montevideo saw just over 20 inches of snow and Marshall over 17 inches. The Minnesota Department of Transportation closed roads throughout southwest Minnesota, recommending no travel due to whiteout driving conditions and deep, drifting snow on the roads.

In the Twin Cities, snowfall totals ranged from 16 inches in many locations to 22 inches in Maple Grove.

For the Benson area, April 2018 became the second snowiest on record with 7.5 inches falling over the weekend bringing the month’s total to 17 inches – 3.4 inches behind the record setting year of 2013.

The Benson area averages 40.5 inches of snow, but this year’s total is now at 57.25 inches – the most since 65.2 inches fell during the winter season of 2012-2013. April 2013 contributed 20.4 inches of that total.

The months of October to January brought just 11.7 inches of snow to the area, 9.9 inches below the average of 21.6 for the four months. However, the February through April period has now brought 45.6 inches of snow, 26.6 above the average.

And, we just might get a little more snow. The National Weather Service is forecasting snow for Wednesday, but it could be mixed with a cold rain. There is a 50 percent chance of precipitation with the possibility of 1 to 2 inches of snow....


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Pictured: With more than 7 inches of snow and ice over the weekend, and 17 inches of snow this month, Benson High School spring sports are on hold. Benson plows were clearing city streets Sunday.

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