Storm system brings flooding, freezing rain, snow to Midwest

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KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) -- A storm system stretching from Texas to the Great Lakes states with risks of flooding, freezing rain and snow is causing fatal accidents and forcing schools to close.

The National Weather Service issued winter weather advisories Tuesday for parts of Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin.

Flood warnings were in effect in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan with flood watches in Texas and Arkansas.

In Minnesota, state police say winter weather has contributed to 400 crashes and 250 spin-outs, including two fatal accidents. As much as a half-foot of snow is expected in some areas. Arkansas weather service forecasters say some areas could see 8 inches or more of rain this week.

Schools in Missouri and Wisconsin canceled classes or delayed start times Tuesday.

High water closed roads in Michigan.

Heavy rain and melting snow are combining to cause flooding along with the road closures in parts of Michigan's Lower Peninsula.

Some roads were closed Tuesday in Kalamazoo in southwestern Michigan and the surrounding area due to high water. Temperatures have warmed and the National Weather Service says rainfall is expected to total 3 inches or more in places.

Potholes are a major safety issue following recent freezes and warmups.

In Detroit, police say a 22-year-old man died after the car in which he was a passenger hit a pothole early Tuesday, lost control and crashed into a light pole. The driver was listed in serious condition.

Around the state, pothole patching crews had their work delayed by heavy rains. In northern Michigan, an ice storm warning was in effect.