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Snow
Tanya Anderson walks across the Morningside College campus on her way home from work as snow falls Tuesday. (Journal photo by Jim Lee)

SIOUX CITY -- The blizzard that dumped a record snowfall and caused hazardous driving conditions, killing one person, is expected to fade today, but forecasters say bitterly cold temperatures will take its place.

National Weather Service meteorologist Todd Heitkamp, of the Sioux Falls office, said the heaviest snow was expected to be over by late Tuesday, replaced by light flurries and frigid temperatures today.

As of 6 p.m. Tuesday, the National Weather Service reported a record 5.8 inches of snow in Sioux City. An estimated 8-10 inches was expected by storm's end, which would far surpass the previous mark of 2.8 inches set in 2007.

Today's low temperature is expected to be around zero with winds of 35 mph, which Heitkamp said will combine for a wind chill factor between minus 25 and minus 35 degrees.

The cold temperatures are expected to intensify throughout the week, with a low temperature Thursday morning of minus 5 degrees.

If there's an upside to the forecast, it's that there isn't any snow in the forecast until Sunday, and that's only a 20 percent chance, Heitkamp said.

He said the wind, which gusted to more than 35 mph Tuesday, is expected to decrease to about 10-15 mph by tonight.

Local authorities responded to dozens of accidents Tuesday, including several roll-overs and one that killed a Le Mars, Iowa, man on U.S. Highway 75 in Plymouth County, Iowa.

Deputies say icy road conditions were likely one of the factors that caused Juan Chagolla, 46, to lose control of his southbound Chevrolet truck about a mile north of Merrill, Iowa. Chagolla's truck went through the median and was hit by a northbound semitrailer.

Chagolla was pronounced dead at the scene. Passenger Rosalinda Chagolla, 41, also of Le Mars, was listed in guarded condition Tuesday night at Mercy Medical Center -- Sioux City.

Sioux City Police Sgt. Mike Post encouraged residents to stay off the roads today, if possible, or give themselves plenty of time to get to their destination.

Post urged those who do venture out not to use their cruise control. A vehicle on cruise control can lose control as it travels over icy spots, he said, sending drivers careening toward the ditch before they have time to react.

"A lot of people -- it's such a habit," Post said. "When the weather gets bad, it can cause lots of accidents."

Nasty weather meant an early dismissal Tuesday and canceled activities for students in Sioux City and South Sioux City public schools. Several classes at local colleges were canceled.

As of Tuesday night, school district officials hadn't made any decisions about today's start times, but said they were watching the weather closely.

"It's really important for kids to be in school, because we think learning is really important," said Steven Rector, superintendent of South Sioux City Community Schools. "But when the weather conditions put lives at risk, then obviously the safety of students and the safety of staff is the first priority."

Both districts typically make the decision to cancel or postpone classes by 6:15 a.m., officials said, after checking the forecast and road conditions.

The two districts will notify parents and staff of any delays or cancellations through their phone message alert systems and through local media.

Students weren't the only ones who went home early. The Southern Hills Mall, Dakota County (Neb.) courthouse and Woodbury County courthouse also shut their doors early.

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