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Barometric record in jeopardy

A record the Austin-Albert Lea area set 12 years ago is in jeopardy from the powerful low-pressure system whistling through the state today.

On Nov. 10, 1998, the Austin-Albert Lea area registered a barometric low of 28.43 inches, the lowest yet recorded in Minnesota.

On the date, damaging winds pounded the area, and a gust of 93 mph was recorded near the weather service office in La Crosse, Wis., where a 75-foot flagpole atop Grandad Bluff was snapped. A Genoa, Wis., man was killed when a tree fell on him. Many duck hunters were stranded on the Mississippi River because of the strong winds and toppled boats.

Today's storm could approach that reading, according to the service. The low reading, however, will probably be in the central or northern part of the state.

Not that Mower County will just have a few days of gentle breezes. Winds could crank up and hit 60 mph at times, according to the forecast. The entire region will be under a high-wind warning until 7 p.m. Wednesday.


The forecast calls for a high early today around 50, then it will drop. Southwest winds, however, will increase to 25 to 40 mph with gusts up to 60 mph. Tonight, winds will be nearly as strong and that will continue into Wednesday, when there is a chance of rain or snow.

The winds are expected to taper off by Thursday.

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