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Storm wreaks havoc on area; blizzard warning issued for Friday night

New Hampton Tribune and Nashua Reporter - Staff Photo - Create Article
A motorist drives into New Hampton west side Friday morning, when visibility even in town was limited, and the National Weather Service said the worst part of the latest winter storm will hit the area late Friday afternoon.

By Bob Fenske

The National Weather Service and area law enforcement officials' advice sounded the same Friday morning: Stay home.

The reason, of course, was the dangerous winter storm that had descended upon Chickasaw County and beyond, leading schools to call off classes, businesses to close early and the shutting down of the Chickasaw County Courthouse.

The storm hit the area overnight on Thursday and by the time it departs Saturday morning, forecasters say an additional 8 to 12 inches of snow will blanket the area. Truth be told, however, it was hard to tell how much snow had fallen in New Hampton Friday morning because strong winds were causing blowing and drifting, not only in rural areas but also in the city of New Hampton.

The weather service issued a plethora of warnings for Chickasaw County.

• A winter storm warning runs through 3 p.m. on Friday.

• A blizzard warning will cover the area from 3 p.m. to midnight.

• And a winter storm warning will be in effect from midnight through 9 a.m. Saturday morning.

Winds were gusting up to 30 miles per hour on Friday morning and were expected to pick up and gust near 45 miles per hour Friday night.

Weather services officials said the snow and wind should begin to ebb later Friday night and the system will move out of the area by noon on Saturday.

School administrators made the call for a no classes on Friday Thursday evening, and virtually every sports event in the state scheduled for Friday night was postponed. The New Hampton/Turkey Valley wrestling team's home tournament, the Doc Carr Duals, on Saturday was also called off, as was the Chickasaws' boys basketball game against MFL MarMac at Upper Iowa University in Fayette.

Eighty-eight of Iowa's 99 counties were under a blizzard warning Friday, while the other 11 were under winter storm warnings as the second major winter storm of the week hit the state.

And the "post-blizzard news" isn't much better as temperatures will drop below zero late Saturday afternoon and remain there until at least Wednesday.


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