- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 1, 2015

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Summer-like temperatures and gusty winds are increasing the fire danger in southern Minnesota.

Various fire warnings are out for parts of central and southeastern Minnesota until Thursday evening.

High winds spread flames that destroyed two homes in St. Paul on Wednesday. No one was hurt.

KSTP-TV reports fire destroyed three homes under construction in Otsego (aht-SEE’-goh). Officials say a grass fire spread to the homes.

In Sauk Rapids, two people are safe after escaping a house fire driven by strong winds. The St. Cloud Times reports the column of smoke could be seen from more than a mile away.

The temperature in Minneapolis soared to 84 degrees on Wednesday. Winds were gusting up to 41 mph.

Minnesota also could see its first severe thunderstorms of the season Wednesday evening.

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