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Detroit dodges snowstorm before Super Bowl XL

DETROIT (Feb. 5, 2006) -- The city dodged the brunt of a snowstorm before the Super Bowl, with only an inch of snow expected before the NFL title game between Seattle and Pittsburgh.

Light snow fell Sunday morning, much less than the earlier forecasts of up to 9 inches. The evening game was set for Ford Field, which has a steel roof. Temperatures were expected to reach 36 degrees with gusts up to 30 mph.

"The brunt of the storm is over," said Brian Tilley, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service's office in White Lake Township.

The weather service canceled a winter storm warning for southeast Michigan shortly before midnight Saturday. Forecasts calling for 9 inches of snow were later revised to 2 to 5.

The agency reported about 1 inch fell at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in the suburb of Romulus, and 1.5 inches fell in the suburb of Dearborn.

The northern suburbs, however, got 6 to 8 inches of snow. Hotels there were packed with visitors for the game.

Michigan State Trooper Dan Stickel said Sunday morning area freeways were relatively snow-free, but urged drivers to use caution and expect heavy traffic heading to downtown.

"It's clear for the most part," Stickel said. "There are ice patches and black ice."

Utilities reported some storm-related power outages Sunday morning, but most were outside the Detroit area.

About 250 plows were on hand if needed Saturday night. Hundreds of city workers and volunteers were prepared to clear sidewalks so fans could get to the game.

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