Multiple crashes, spinouts following first winter blast

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(ABC 6 News) – Southeastern Minnesota had its first big accumulating snow Monday, and many were getting used to driving in it again.

According to the Minnesota State Patrol, Monday morning there were 332 crashes, 67 spin-outs, and 3 jack-knifed semi-trucks.

Of those crashes, 25 left people with injuries, and one fatal crash has been reported.

In Southeast Minnesota, State Patrol reported 38 crashes between 5 a.m. to 1 p.m., with three of those including injuries.

“Today we just had a minimal snowfall and we were really busy,” said Sargent Troy Christianson with the Minnesota State Patrol.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) says the number one thing drivers can do in these conditions is slow down. If drivers do get into a crash, or spin out into a ditch, MNDOT says to stay in the car, with a seatbelt on.

“You don’t want to be outside your vehicle. There are only so many law enforcement and tow trucks that can get to those right away, so sometimes you might have to wait for a little bit. So stay in that warm vehicle,” said MnDOT Spokesperson Mike Dougherty.

The Department of Transportation is also asking people to look out for the region’s 102 snowplows.

They will be driving at around 25 miles per hour clearing snow and leaving behind salt. Drive slowly behind them with an extra stopping distance.

“It’s better to be arriving a little late, than ending up in the ditch,” Dougherty said.