Emergency management offices will be staffed on Saturday, in anticipation of the day's nasty weather.
Fresh from a conference call with National Weather Service offices serving the state, Wisconsin Emergency Management warns that most of Wisconsin will be under a winter storm warning all day Saturday. Crisis Communications Manager Lori Getter says meteorologists are forecasting heavy snow — up to 12-14 inches in the north, and about 4-inches or less to the south. Getter says people will have to re-learn how to drive on icy snow-packed roads, but that's not their biggest concern.
“There's a potential for freezing rain, especially in southern Wisconsin. And so that is one of our major concerns, not only will it cause icy conditions for driving, but depending on the amount of freezing rain and ice as well as some strong gusty winds, there could be potential for downed power lines, downed trees.”
Getter says as a precaution, they'll be monitoring the situation all day and evening. In case the power lines are taken out by the freezing rain accumulated on the lines, Getter says you need to be prepared with the usual stuff: NOAA weather radio, blankets, flashlight, batteries, nonparishable food. etc.
“What you do not want to do is have one of those portable heaters. We've had people over the years bring in charcoal grills. You don't want to bring those inside because of the threat of carbon monoxide.”
Getter would rather you didn't drive, but if you have to, then be sure to allow extra time and be prepared with a shovel and sand. Also, check the DOT website for the latest road conditions.