No travel advised in Sioux Falls area as winter storm dumps snow, stranding motorists

The no travel advisories come as the city of Sioux Falls has already issued a snow alert, but is only plowing emergency routes at this time.

Multiple vehicles are observed on a traffic camera during a no travel advisory at the intersection of 41st Street and Interstate 29 in Sioux Falls at 9:45 a.m. on Jan. 3, 2023.
Contributed / South Dakota Department of Transportation

SIOUX FALLS — No travel is advised across much of the greater Sioux Falls area today as the city’s third winter storm in a month continues to deteriorate road conditions.

The Sioux Falls Police Department and sheriff’s offices in both Lincoln and Minnehaha counties have issued no travel advisories, noting that treacherous road conditions have made much of the area impossible to travel through.

On Tuesday morning, Jan. 3, the Sioux Falls Police Department said that poor visibility from blowing snow has mixed with scattered slippery spots and heavy snow and ice accumulations, making travel dangerous.

A statement from Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead added that these conditions are leading to slower response times from plow crews, tow trucks and law enforcement, especially in rural areas. Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Swenson said ramps along Interstate 29 to the south of Sioux Falls have become impassable and that law enforcement are having trouble reaching stranded motorists.

As of 10 a.m. Tuesday, the Sioux Falls Police Department had responded to dozens of crashes stranded motorists, as well as traffic hazards across the city. The number of calls serviced by both sheriff’s offices was not immediately available.


The no travel advisories come as the city of Sioux Falls has already issued a snow alert, but is only plowing emergency routes at this time. Plowing began on those routes Monday night and will continue until all emergency routes have been cleared. The city noted that plowing information for zone-specific routes is not yet available, and will not be announced until the snow begins to taper off.

According to the National Weather Service, as many as 11 inches of snow had fallen near Joe Foss Field, with up to a foot more expected as strong accumulation rates persist.

Poor road conditions aren’t specific to the immediate Sioux Falls area, either. As of 10 a.m. Tuesday, Interstate 90 from Marion Road to Chamberlain remains closed, as does Interstate 29 from Interstate 90 to U.S. Highway 14 in Brookings. The closure is in effect until further notice, with no estimated reopening time provided.

As road closures and hazardous travel conditions persist, many government services have closed in the Sioux Falls area, including the Lincoln County Courthouse and the Minnehaha County Administration center. The federal building in downtown Sioux Falls has also closed.

Sioux Area Metro has suspended all services until further notice and the Sioux Falls Airport has closed with no timetable for reopening.

Current weather conditions can be found on the National Weather Service’s website, while up to date road conditions are listed on SD511.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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