Icy conditions in Monroe County lead to crashes and backups on I-94
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - For roughly 12 hours, I-94 near Tomah was impassable as officials worked to clear crashes and slide-offs caused by rain turning to ice on the thoroughfare.
“Overall, though we did have 11 slide-offs, many of which were semis 12 crashes with property damage, and again the one crash with minor injuries,” said Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Jeffrey Spencer. “It’s real difficult oftentimes, you know one accident will cause a number of other accidents.”
Spencer says the crashes and efforts to get to the wreaks caused significant traffic on I-94, which did not clear until around four in the evening. The owner of PER Towing and Recovery, Paul Bingenheimer says the first call he received was around 2:30 Wednesday morning.
“Considering what happened today, there was no loss of life, which is exceptional,” said Bingenheimer.
His company, which specifically tows semis, answered calls to 15 trucks, the most he can remember helping in one day. The road proved treacherous, not just for commuters but also those out trying to help crashed vehicles.
“We had issues getting the salt trucks through the heavy traffic backup,” said Bingeheimer. “And we had multiple tractor-trailers entangled in each other with heavy damage. We could only get the salt truck so far. We ended up shoveling salt into buckets and carrying it a considerable distance into the crash scenes to spread salt.”
Bingenheimer and Spencer advise drivers to use caution and check weather reports before travel, as winter weather conditions can change rapidly.
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