The Minnesota Department of Transportation urges the public to use extra caution when approaching traffic signals following a heavy snowfall event. Motorists and pedestrians should be prepared to stop at intersections with traffic signals, as snow-covered traffic indications can be challenging to see. For reasons of energy efficiency and longer service life, the state’s traffic signals have switched from using incandescent bulbs to light-emitting diodes (LEDs). LEDs produce less than half the heat as incandescent bulbs, and do not emit enough heat to melt off snow and ice that may accumulate on them. “Following a snow event, our top [...]
Snowplow operators are out in full force across southern Minnesota cleaning and treating snow-packed roads. MnDOT's Anne Meyer says to be sure to give plow operators plenty of room to work: "When you're slowed down in traffic so are snowplows. So it takes longer for our crews to get to every lane of traffic and really clear away that snow."
A new program from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development will help put more robots on manufacturing floors. The Automation Loan Participation Program offers loans to help cover the costs of machinery, equipment, and software needed to increase productivity. DEED Commissioner Steve Grove says small businesses statewide need the extra help: "We know the workforce shortage is big. We have to be able to hire more workers in more places than we ever have before. But at the end of the day you can't create a workforce out of thin air you have to be able to automate a [...]
Now that the first significant winter storm of the season for central and southern Minnesota has done its work, get ready for a bit of a weather rollercoaster: colder today, then warming up quite a bit by Friday, but much colder Saturday, then warmer again Sunday. Meteorologist Brent Hewett at the National Weather Service in Chanhassen takes a well-seasoned view of it: "We are going down the hill, but there is some smaller bumps in-between, before we bottom out here. So we'll enjoy the warmer weather days that are in between the cold ones, I guess." By Friday, highs are expected [...]
Joe Calderone with the National Weather Service in Chanhassen says: "The snowfall is likely gonna be ongoing through most of the day, and that's likely when the heaviest amounts are gonna occur, is during the daylight hours. So there could even be some impacts that do press into the evening commute as well." Calderone says drivers should allow extra time and space between vehicles.
As we head into December many of us will be gathering for holiday parties. Dr. Abe Jacob with M Health Fairview says with this comes the risk of spreading illness. He says if you are feeling sick: "Please don't give that gift to other people. Stay away from family gatherings or large gatherings so you can protect others around you. And if you are going out you know wear a mask so you're not spreading those droplets you know to other people. And even if you're feeling great, you may want to consider even just wearing a mask to protect yourself." [...]
A motivational speaker is urging teachers, administrators, and students to separate from their smartphones and connect with the humans around them. Joe Beckman, a consultant based in Minneapolis: "How do we say yes to the benefits of tech, but not lose the one thing that got us here in the first place, which is human connection?... We know tech's not going anywhere anytime soon. "It's not the bad guy in the room. If we use it in a way that makes our world and our lives better if we use it as a tool rather than a companion." Beckman says smartphones [...]
Minnesota hospitals and clinics are feeling the pinch from a large number of serious cases of respiratory illness -- including RSV, flu and lingering COVID -- and Doctor Jill Amsberry at CentraCare in Saint Cloud says there are things everyone can do the ease the crunch: "Staying home when you're sick; keeping your kids home from school when they're sick; keeping them out of sports when they're sick." Amsberry is urging everyone to get a flu shot and a COVID vaccine or booster. She says mask-up while in public spaces, wash hands frequently and cover your cough -- the same precautions [...]
Minnesota State Fair General Manager Jerry Hammer says he will not miss the day after Labor Day when he retires. Hammer is calling it a career next spring after leading the Great Minnesota Get-Together for 26 years: "As far as the fair itself, I look forward to being here and actually going to the fair and seeing what all the fuss is about. It'll be tough I know that. I will be tempted to pick up trash...and I'll probably keep doing all that." Hammer praised his staff and predecessors for the State Fair's successes. He did note that they had record [...]
A new podcast aims to grow agricultural education in Minnesota. Natasha Mortenson of Riverview LLC in Morris is one of three hosts of "Keepin’ It Rural" and says the goals of the show are to see ag education programming in every school, connect more students to FFA, and promote teaching opportunities: "The three of us are really passionate about connecting teachers and students to agriculture, like the world of agriculture." Mortenson’s cohosts are Rebecca Paskewitz, an ag teacher at Glencoe-Silver Lake, and Lindsay Fulton, the owner of Blondie’s Butcher Shop in Wanamingo. She says the podcast is a great way to [...]