It was a dark and cold ride for some Northstar riders as the second inbound trip experienced a power failure. While the train continued to run on schedule and arrived on time at Target Field, passengers endured the trip without heat and emergency lights only. The train ran on backup battery power.
On the roads, the cold led to a handful of stalls as to be expected when temperatures hovered in the 10 to 15 degree below zero range. Crashes were more of a factor.
The late rush hour was plagued with lots of stagnation in downtown Minneapolis as three wrecks on eastbound 94 had traffic knotted up from Hwy. 55 to 35W. The crashes took out lanes at 1st Avenue and LaSalle Avenue. A fender bender blocked the right shoulder at Huron Blvd.
Earlier a left-lane blocking accident had traffic on eastbound Hwy. 212 jammed from Mitchell Road back to Hwy. 101 in Eden Prairie. That made for a 24-minute trip from Hwy. 41 to 494. That crash has since cleared.
Eastbound 394 had its share of issues. An early crash at Hampshire Avenue and one that followed at Louisiana Avenue caused traffic to stack up from 494 over to Hwy. 100. Even at this hour, 394 is still sluggish with 16 minutes needed from 494 to downtown Minneapolis.
Commuters in the east and south metro escaped most of the problems as traffic moved along well. The early rush had drivers on I-494 in Bloomington clicking off the cruise control with a crash at West Bush Lake Road leading to delays from Flying Cloud Drive between 6:30 and 7:30 a.m.