Staying safe when the storm hits - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Staying safe when the storm hits


Marathon County officials are encouraging people to stay off the roads when the storm hits.

On Wednesday, road crews across the area geared up for what could be a busy day.

"We try not to keep people in the trucks longer than 14 hours," said Kris Baguhn, Marathon Co. Highway Department, "unless it's really an emergency."

The department has more than 30 crews ready to hit the streets when the snow starts falling.

"We're kind of hoping that it's light at the beginning," said Baguhn. "Traffic is low at that time of day and we can go on the road at probably between 3 and 4 am, before the traveling public hits the road in the morning."

Emergency management officials say this storm brings some very legitimate worries.

"What concerns me the most is the prediction of 30 to 40 mph gusting winds," said Steve Hagman, Marathon Co. Emergency Management Director. "If we do get 7-8 inches of snow it won't take long, even though a plow has come through, that snow can be back across the road quite quickly."    

Aside from traveling, officials say there are some other safety tips to keep in mind.

Have plenty of water at home and food that's easy to prepare in case the power goes out.

Make sure to clear a path out of your house if the snow gets too deep. And also clean off outside vents to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.

"We call that shelter and place in the emergency management world," said Hangman. "But sometimes that's just what we want you to do, is just stay home so we can get the roads cleaned up and wait until it's safe to move people around."

If you do need to go out during the storm, officials recommend giving yourself extra time, and go slow.

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