State of Emergency Declared

February 02, 2011
Carrie Meier 608 / 266-5374
Emergency Management

 State of Emergency Declared

 Overnight winter storm conditions produced over 100 phone calls to Dane County 9-1-1 from stranded motorists throughout Dane County.  Throughout the night, county snow plows, Dane County deputies, DNR wardens and Fire agencies responded to these calls in extreme blizzard conditions.  Emergency vehicles had difficulty getting thru the snow with some also getting stuck.  Chains were placed on squad cars and plow trucks.  Plows were prioritized to assist deputies and fire personnel to rescue and assist stranded motorists.  Six foot drifts and sustained winds of 50 mph were reported throughout the evening.

 By 4:30 a.m. the situation had improved slightly with diminished calls to he 9-1-1 center and total stranded motorists decreasing to approximately 30.  Rescues continue to be prioritized.  Dane County Sheriff Mahoney urges motorists to avoid driving if at all possible until blizzard conditions diminish. 

 The National Weather Service predicts the blizzard warning will be ending at noon today.   Heavy drifting continues.  TRAVEL IS NOT RECOMMENDED.

 Temperatures are expected to drop Wednesday afternoon and go well below zero Wednesday evening.  The combination of drifting snow and low temperatures makes traveling extremely risky.

 Dane County Emergency Operations Center operated throughout the night with Sheriff’s Department staff, Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, Emergency Management staff and Fire Chief’s Association President along with many other agencies assisting through phone conference calls.

 County Executive Kathleen Falk signed and declared a Declaration of a State of Emergency for Dane County.  Falk says “thanks to all the emergency responders who worked all night to keep people safe.”

 The national weather service declared a Civil Danger Warning which is defined as “driving is extremely hazardous tonight on all roads in southern Wisconsin.  If you become stranded….emergency vehicles may not be able to reach you.” 

 Click here for the latest forecast information from the National Weather Service.