Winter storm expected to impact travel tonight through Thursday
A winter storm system is expected to move through Wisconsin tonight through Thursday, bringing a wintry mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain to areas across Wisconsin. Road conditions and visibility will vary significantly depending on location over the next few days. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) encourages drivers to be weather aware and “know before you go” with 511 Wisconsin.
Drivers should plan ahead and visit 511wi.gov to monitor winter road conditions and view live videos from traffic cameras along their route. WisDOT uses real-time, calculated data to indicate current road conditions across the state, including good winter driving, slippery stretches, snow covered, ice covered, and travel not advised.
The National Weather Service forecasts a band of snow is expected to move across most of the state Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. A brief lull is possible before additional precipitation moves in later Wednesday and continues into Thursday night. This second round of precipitation could bring a combination of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow, depending on the exact location.
Snowplow crews and emergency responders across Wisconsin are preparing for potentially hazardous conditions on the roads throughout the duration of the storm.
Preparation before winter travel
- Check 511wi.gov for road conditions or incidents along your route. Download the 511 Wisconsin app to monitor conditions on the go. Follow 511 Wisconsin (@511WI) on Twitter for the latest incidents and information.
- Clear snow and ice from vehicles before traveling.
- Fill the gas tank and windshield washer fluid.
- Have a fully charged phone and an emergency kit in your vehicle.
- Alert others about your route and expected travel time.
Precautions while driving
- Snow means slow. Allow extra travel time, following distance, and reduce your speed during winter conditions.
- Be cautious on bridges, overpasses, and entrance and exit ramps.
- Don’t be overconfident in four-wheel or all-wheel-drive vehicles. All vehicles require additional time and distance to stop in adverse conditions.
- Avoid using cruise control in winter conditions.
- Buckle up and put your phone down while driving. Every trip, every time.
- Leave room for maintenance vehicles and snowplows. Move over or slow down for stopped emergency vehicles.
- Stay at least 200 feet behind a working snowplow. Make sure that you can see the plow’s mirrors to ensure the driver can see you.
- In case of a crash or slide off, stay in the vehicle, turn on the hazards, call 911 and move vehicle(s) out of traffic if possible.
For Motor Carriers
Trucking companies and their drivers are strongly encouraged to review their schedules and routes, and plan accordingly. Commercial motor vehicle drivers should check 511wi.gov before departure and throughout their trips for current travel impacts and advisories. Oversize/Overweight vehicle drivers are reminded their permits restrict operations during inclement weather.