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State offices closed as South Dakota braces for 'historic springtime snowfall'

Total snowfall accumulations predicted in South Dakota between Wednesday, April 10 and Friday, April 12, according to the National Weather Service. Totals updated as of Wednesday morning. Image courtesy of the National Weather Service.

PIERRE, S.D. -- With severe winter weather making its way across South Dakota yet again, Republican Gov. Kristi Noem has ordered the closure of state government offices in 52 counties on Wednesday, April 10.

According to a Wednesday news release from the state's Department of Public Safety, 52 of the state's 66 counties are under a blizzard warning. Only "essential personnel" in state offices in those counties should report to work, Noem ordered.

The National Weather Service is calling the April blizzard a "historic springtime snowstorm," with some areas in the state expected to see up to 30 inches of snow between Wednesday and Friday. The heaviest snow and strongest winds are predicted between Wednesday and Thursday nights.

The April storm comes on the heels of Winter Storm Ulmer, which blasted the state with high snow accumulation and gusting winds in mid-March. Temperatures quickly rose after the storm, causing rapid snow melt and devastating flooding across the state.

Noem declared the state under emergency on March 15, and the state Senate on March 29 passed a resolution urging South Dakota's Washington delegation to pursue a national emergency declaration.

The 52 counties under blizzard warning for this week's storm are: Aurora, Beadle, Bennett, Bon Homme, Brookings, Brown, Brule, Buffalo, Charles Mix, Clark, Codington, Custer, Davison, Day, Deuel, Dewey, Douglas, Edmunds, Faulk, Grant, Gregory, Haakon, Hamlin, Hand, Hanson, Hughes, Hutchinson, Hyde, Jackson, Jerauld, Jones, Kingsbury, Lake, Lyman, Marshall, McCook, Meade, Mellette, Miner, Moody, Oglala Lakota, Pennington, Potter, Roberts, Sanborn, Spink, Stanley, Sully, Todd, Tripp, Turner and Walworth.

According to the National Weather Service, total predicted accumulations as of Wednesday morning are:

  • Sioux Falls: 4 to 6 inches
  • Rapid City: 12 to 18 inches
  • Pierre: 18 to 24 inches
  • Mitchell: 18 to 24 inches
  • Aberdeen: 12 to 18 inches
  • Watertown: 18 to 24 inches
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