Situation Report #2 Winter Storm - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Situation Report #2 Winter Storm

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Madison (Press Release) - Overview: A major winter storm has been dumping over a foot of snow in northwest Wisconsin. According to the National Weather Service – many areas this morning received 1-2 inches of snow per hour.  

The snow is expected to continue today with another 5-7 inches from Ashland to Hayward and East. Tomorrow the area is expected to receive a snow/rain mixture with possible freezing rain in the early morning.

WI Dept. of Transportation: DOT issued a press release this morning regarding travel in the northwest. With more snow expected throughout the day, motorists are being asked to refrain from travelling unless absolutely necessary throughout most of the region as the Winter Storm Warning continues for many counties in northwestern Wisconsin.  The Northwest Region State Patrol has responded to about a dozen runs offs and crashes, including one fatality overnight in Dunn County. Highway crews have been out plowing state highways most of the night and will continue throughout the day, but are having a difficult time keeping up in some areas due to the local snow fall rate. With more snow expected throughout the day, motorists are being asked to refrain from travelling unless absolutely necessary throughout most of the region as the Winter Storm Warning continues for many counties in northwestern Wisconsin. Winter road conditions are available by calling 5-1-1 or 511wi.gov.

Power Outages: A significant storm with heavy, wet snow began early Thursday morning and continues to move through northwestern Wisconsin, impacting approximately 24,000 Xcel Energy electric customers. Xcel Energy has brought in all available crews from areas that were not impacted by the storm and from neighboring utilities to assist in restoration and expects to make significant progress today. At this time, approximately 16,000 customers still remain without service. We anticipate having most customers restored to service by tonight with all customers being restored by end of the day on Friday. The hardest hit areas include Menomonie, Spring Valley, Hudson, Amery, Birchwood and Hayward.  No shelters are currently open.

Ashland County: Reports of 7-12 inches of snow. Flooding is still a possibility on the Bad River and Chippewa River in the Town of Glidden.

Barron County:  Reports 10-12 inches of snow, there are reports of down branches and some power lines, scattered report of power outages. County Schools are closed.

Bayfield County: Reports of 12 inches in the City of Washburn down to 4 inches in other parts of the county

Burnett County: Reports of 4-6 inches of snow, estimated 600 people out of power. Schools are open.

Douglas County: Reports of 2 to 4 inches of snow. No reports of power outages or flooding.

Iron County: Reports of 3 to 5 inches of snow. Schools are open. The Montreal River remains at flood stage.

Polk County: Polk County is apparently one of those counties on the edge between the heavy and lighter snow amounts. In the NW corner of the county there is little to no snow. In the central part (north of Hwy 8) they have 4 - 6 inches. South of Hwy 8 is where the brunt of the storm hit. Snow amounts ranging from 9-10 inches in Amery, to 12 plus in the Clear Lake and Clayton areas. There are many reports of trees down and power outages. There are not large areas without power, just the smaller localized outages.

Price County:   About 1"-2" of snow reported in northern and western parts of county. Ice is accumulating on trees, power lines, grass throughout most of the county.

Rusk County:   Snow ranges from 6 to 8 inches of snow. Schools are closed. No reports of power outages

Sawyer County: There are reports of trees down in the Hayward and Lac Courte Oreilles area. 7 inches in Winter, 9 to 12 inches in the Hayward Area.

Washburn County: County had an average of 6" of snow. A couple roads are being monitored for potential flooding.

The State Emergency Operations Center remains on the 24-hour duty officer system, which is level 4. The WEM Senior Duty Officer and the Duty Officer will continue to monitor the situation.

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