The region began digging out Tuesday from a blizzard that closed schools, canceled events and broke records in Yankton.
The storm, which started Monday and spilled into Tuesday, officially dumped 7 inches of snow, which set a new record for March 6. The previous record was 4.2 inches, record in 1919. Yankton also received .76 inches of moisture, topping the old mark of .68 set in 1983.
The storm was driven by strong winds that created white-out conditions, with the National Weather Service warning motorists not to travel.
The top wind gust in South Dakota was recorded at Lake Andes, which clocked in at 59 mph. Yankton’s top wind gust was 47 mph.
Area snowfall totals, beyond Yankton’s 7 inches, included 8 inches near Salem, 5.5 inches in Armour, 4.8 inches in Tyndall, 4 inches in Lake Andes and 2 inches in Norfolk. There was a report of nearly 10 inches west of Mitchell.
Transportation officials have reopened all of I-29 in eastern South Dakota and all of I-90 in southeastern South Dakota, but caution that travel conditions are still poor.
Poor road conditions across the Dakotas led to a highway fatality in North Dakota.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol said a 35-year-old Fargo man driving a pickup rear-ended a snowplow on an icy Interstate 29 in Grand Forks County Tuesday morning.
In the wake of the storm, Gov. Dennis Daugaard closed state offices in 23 counties across South Dakota Tuesday.
At midday Tuesday, Yankton street crews were working to clear the main roadways, with many of the side streets yet to be plowed.
A snow emergency for the downtown area of Yankton was scheduled to go into effect at 2 a.m. today (Wednesday), the city announced.
Most schools throughout the region were closed Tuesday.
The powerful storm moved toward the East Coast, prompting storm warnings from eastern Pennsylvania to most of New England, from late Tuesday night into Thursday morning.
The weather did cause numerous changes. Some are still applicable today:
• Tuesday’s Yankton County Commission meeting has been postponed to 4 p.m. Thursday. All county government offices are closed.
• Wednesday’s Yankton Quarterback Club meeting has been canceled.