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Southern Minnesota deals with high winds, snow

Responders with Steele County Emergency Management are preparing to help throughout the night.

OWATONNA, Minn. — High winds and heavy snow are creating hazardous conditions Wednesday afternoon, according to drivers.

Although, Wednesday morning was more on the peaceful side.

Keith Rockwell’s morning drive wasn’t too bad.

“It’s time to relax and rest up,” said Rockwell as he went for his morning coffee at a Kwik Trip just north of Owatonna.

Rockwell' spirits were still high around 11 a.m.

“It’s pretty mild right now. We’ll see what happens after that,” he said

But an hour later, he had a different outlook.

“Ugh,” he said. “I’d rather be home. It didn’t take 15 mins. It went from just wind to this. It looks like it’s going to get pretty nasty.”

He and other truckers say the storm is already bad.

“It sucks,” said trucker Bill Tome. “It’s cold. My dogs don’t like it. My wife don’t like it.”

Sure, they’ve seen a blizzard or two. But this change was sudden.

“Bad winter storms, yes,” said Chris Shaud. “But not a snap of the fingers, no.”

Kristen Sailer is in charge of Steele County’s emergency management, and she said all responders are ready to help Wednesday night.

“We’re making sure they have the resources they need and preparing the armory and National Guard,” she said

Some drivers say they’ll go as far as they can in the weather, while others are saying parking lots will be home for the night.

“The weather here can change in a heartbeat,” said Rockwell.

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