Blizzard Pounding Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan

December 12, 2010; 10:44 AM ET
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A blizzard that dumped nearly two feet of snow in Minnesota on Saturday, stranding thousands of travelers at airports and on roadways, moved on to eastern Wisconsin, northern Illinois and northern Michigan on Sunday.

The heaviest snow and highest winds creating blizzard conditions lashed eastern Wisconsin, including Green Bay, Wis., and northern Illinois. The visibility fell below a quarter of a mile in this zone.

Excessive delays and many cancellations continue at the Chicago O'Hare International Airport with continued visibility issues and de-icing concerns with falling temperatures. Up to half a foot of snow is expected to clobber areas just east of Chicago.

High winds blowing at 50-60 mph is whipping the snow around. Significant drifting of snow is occurring with reports of snow drifts of up to five feet from southern Minnesota and northern Iowa to eastern Wisconsin and northern Michigan.

Countless numbers of roads are closed, including across many areas where the falling snow has diminished.

Travel will be extremely dangerous to impossible at times across portions of I-90, I-94, I-39, I-35, I-75 and I-80 through the rest of this weekend.

A good Samaritan tries to help free a woman's car from the snow on University Avenue as a winter storm continues in St. Paul, Minn., Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010. The storm formed in the Rocky Mountains on Friday and then swept into northern Nebraska and Iowa overnight. By Saturday morning, heavy snow and strong winds had created blizzard conditions across eastern South Dakota, northwestern Iowa and southwestern Minnesota, and the storm was moving east into Minnesota's Twin Cities and western Wisconsin. (AP Photo/Ann Heisenfelt)

Numerous accidents and spin-outs have occurred from Nebraska through Wisconsin with extremely poor roadways and whiteout conditions. Stranded vehicles are littering some roads across the region.

The raging storm has led to a report out of Victor, Iowa, in which a resident reported never having seen conditions deteriorate so rapidly in his 55 years of living there.

The high winds have not only been adding to travel nightmares across the Midwest, they have also led to sporadic damage.

Power outages have been reported in Charles City, Iowa, and across Crawford County, Wis. A metal shed was flipped off of its cement foundation in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It will be an extremely dangerous situation where power outages occur, as AccuWeather RealFeel® temperatures plummet to subzero values.

In Minneapolis, which was in the heart of the blizzard on Saturday, 17.1 inches of snow fell, forcing hundreds of flights to be canceled at the Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport on Saturday. Now temperatures have dropped off below zero degrees F. The AccuWeather RealFeel® temperature will be below minus 15-20 degrees F through tonight.

This map, courtesy of Google and the Minnesota Department of Transportation, shows road closures throughout south-central and southwestern Minnesota and hazardous driving conditions throughout central and eastern parts of the state, including the Minneapolis area, Sunday morning.

Fears of the weight of heavy snow collapsing the roof of the Minneapolis Metrodome forced the cancellation of the Vikings vs. New York Giants football game today. The roof collapsed around 5 a.m. EST Sunday morning.

Farther south and east, snow is falling through southern Michigan with up to half a foot of snow possible in Detroit. Gusty winds may add to travel concerns there, even if blizzard criteria is not met.

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Snow showers are also spreading across the Tennessee and Ohio valleys to the southern Appalachians, while mostly rain is soaking the Eastern Seaboard.

The AccuWeather.com Winter Weather Center has the latest snow map.

Meanwhile, as the frigid winds blow across the relatively warm waters of the Great Lakes behind the blizzard, the lake-effect snow machine will be ramping up again, dumping feet of snow on some communities and causing whiteout conditions.

This picture was taken during the blizzard in Cottage Grove, Minn., a suburb southeast of the Twin Cities, by Sarah Nygaard. Nygaard said she took the picture 10 minutes after her driveway was cleared with a snow blower, and it was already whitened again.

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