Oil Pipeline
Oil Pipeline

A vicious winter storm pounded the U.S. upper Midwest and northern plains Monday, frustrating travelers but delighting children enjoying a holiday from school.

Heavy snow, freezing rain and bitterly cold winds created blizzard conditions in North and South Dakota and parts of Minnesota, making any kind of travel — on the roads or in the sky — impossible.

It was minus 12 degrees Celsius in Bismark, North Dakota, Monday. The state capitol was buried in 32 centimeters of snow.

Thousands are without power. A 400-kilometer stretch of Interstate 90 in South Dakota — a major east-west highway — was shut down, as were several other highways.

No deaths have been reported so far from the storm, which forecasters predict will move into the Canadian provinces of Quebec and Ontario overnight and into Tuesday.