A powerful storm brought heavy winds, snow and rain to the central United States on Monday, making travel hazardous and “nearly impossible” in some areas, with extreme weather on both coasts set to last into Tuesday.

The National Weather Service said early Monday that the Northern and Central Plains into the Upper Midwest would be affected, with sleet and freezing rain reaching as far as the Mississippi Valley.

Minnesota could see snowfall of 6 to 12 inches an hour, bringing travel chaos to the Twin Cities.

A 51-year-old woman died Sunday in Burnsville, 15 miles south of Minneapolis, after her vehicle ran off the road and struck a tree, police said.

Minnesota State Patrol named her as Elizabeth Evans of Lakeville and said she was driving north on Interstate 35E approaching County Road 42 at the time of the accident, NBC News affiliate station KARE 11 reported.

The state patrol said there had been at least 328 crashes reported as of 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, involving 13 injuries. More than 200 vehicles spun out or slid off roads, while 10 semi-trailers jack-knifed.

Some 20 million people across the continental United States, from the West Coast to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, were subject to weather warnings Sunday.

California was rocked by a spring storm on Sunday, with hailstones the size of quarters and winds as strong as 60 mph, the NWS said. Lake Tahoe received about a foot of snow, potentially a boost for ski resorts — although several were forced to close ski lifts on Saturday after recording wind gusts measuring more than 90 mph.

Dramatic video captured the moment the L.A. Fire Department rescued a 35-year-old woman from the Los Angeles River, fast-moving and swollen from the storm waters. She was picked out of the rapids by a firefighter lowered by a rescue helicopter. She was taken to a hospital with only minor injuries and hypothermia, the fire department said.

Hundreds of traffic accidents across the Northeast were reported to police overnight as icy conditions took hold.

Over the weekend a powerful weather system battered the tri-state area, with more than 2 feet of snow and downed power lines in some parts. Vermont saw as much as 30 inches of snow, the weather service said.

More than 100,000 customers were still without power in Maine, along with 22,000 in New Hampshire and 12,000 in New York, as of 6:30 a.m. ET Monday, according to PowerOutage.us, which tracks energy connections.


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