Dane County officials prepare for winter storm, stretch of extreme cold

Emergency management agencies say they are ready for a week of severe weather.
Published: Feb. 4, 2021 at 3:37 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 4, 2021 at 6:18 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - As heavy and wet snow falls on Thursday, Dane County officials say they are on alert.

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi says the local government agencies will be active throughout the duration of below zero temperatures.

“The cold weather is going to go on for a long time,” said Parisi. “We want to make sure that everything’s in place and that everyone knows that services are available.”

Dane County Highway Commissioner Jerry Mandli says 60 vehicles are fully mobilized.

With windy gusts up to 25 mph anticipated over the next few days, Mandli says this will create challenges for road crews.

“We’re going to try and get things cleaned up as fast as we can,” said Mandli. “For the next couple of days, we’re going to be dealing with drifting conditions.”

Dane County Emergency Management Director Charles Tubbs says officials are checking in with all 61 jurisdictions in the area.

“We’re monitoring this 24-hours a day,” said Tubbs. “We can’t control the weather, but we can control how we maneuver and how things proceed in this extreme cold.”

Utility companies reported to county officials that there should not be any unexpected power outages.

Emergency management officials are advising people stay off the roads if they can. If you do need to travel, make sure you have a winter weather preparedness kit in your car.

“It’s not a good time to have a vehicle break down and be stranded on the streets or highways, even though we have emergency responders who can be there,” said Tubbs. “Cold exposure can happen very quickly, so this has a real impact.”

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