Blizzard conditions force closure of Interstates 29 and 90 in South Dakota

 

PIERRE, S.D. – Officials with the South Dakota Departments of Transportation and Public Safety closed Interstate 90 from Rapid City to Mitchell at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday. I-90 from Mitchell to Sioux Falls and I-29 from Sioux Falls to Brookings were both closed at 7 p.m.  I-29 was closed from Brookings to the North Dakota border earlier Wednesday afternoon.

Conditions on I-29 and on I-90 from Rapid City to Mitchell have deteriorated to the point the roadway is no longer safe for travel due to heavy drifting and low visibility. I-90 from Mitchell to Sioux Falls at 7 p.m. when maintenance crews are brought in and heavy drifting will make the road impassable. Drivers are warned to not drive around road closure gates or enter the Interstate from ungated locations.

The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a blizzard warning for a large portion of the state that includes heavy wet snow and winds in excess of 50 mph that is expected to last through late Thursday and possibly in to Friday for some areas, so travelers should plan accordingly and heed the closures and No Travel Advisories.

The central and southeastern part of the state have also had significant rain, freezing rain and sleet which is making roadways icy and make road conditions worse as temperatures drop and the snow moves in to that area.

Motorists are strongly encouraged to change travel plans and stay where you are until crews are able to make roads safe for travel once the storm moves through the state and conditions improve.

Maintenance crews that have not already been pulled off highways will be brought in around 7 p.m. and will resume operations at 5 a.m. tomorrow morning if it is safe to do so. Conditions will continue to deteriorate overnight and roadways may become impassable.

Before heading out, check road condition information at www.safetravelusa.com/sd, on the SDDOT 511 app or by calling 5-1-1. Sign up for ClearPath511 to get closing and opening notifications directly to your phone or email.