ARDEN HILLS, Minn. -- Drivers faced slick roads and slow commutes Tuesday morning. Between 8 a.m. Monday to 4 p.m. Tuesday, there were about 565 crashes and one fatality, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) said they had a few challenges with this storm.
"We started out with a rain/sleet mixture last night after 6 p.m. and then as the evening wore on, we started getting snow coming down and falling temperatures and then wind which of course makes it a little bit more difficult to remove the snow. The other issue we have is traffic driving on top of the snow was compacting it onto the pavement," said Kent Barnard, communications specialist for MnDOT's metro district.
According to Barnard, pre-treating troublesome spots--like hills, curves and bridges--wouldn't have helped Monday night.
"The problem with pre-treating... when it's raining, it just washes it into the ditch. So it's basically worthless," Barnard said.
Barnard said plows were out on the roads once it started snowing--mostly treating them with salt but also using a mixture that includes calcium chloride to prewet the salt.
"So it prewets it and as it comes out of the spinner on the truck, it hits the pavement and sticks better because it's already wet and it's already starting to work, breaking that chemical bond with the ice," Barnard explained.
Many KARE 11 viewers expressed their frustrations with the icy roads on our Facebook page.
Barnard responded, "It's winter in Minnesota. This happens every year. There's a lot of conditions that occur during a snowstorm... It will take some time to get it back to perfectly clear winter driving conditions but people have to be patient, give themselves plenty of time to get where they need to go and drive safely."
MnDOT recommends checking 511mn.org for the latest on road conditions.