First responders brave bitter temperatures to help others - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

First responders brave bitter temperatures to help others


Portage County first responders braved frigid temperatures Friday to search for someone who reportedly jumped into the Wisconsin River.    

The subzero conditions make responding to calls tough, not just on them but also on equipment, according to officials.

The Portage County Sheriff's Office said they do their best to adjust when responding to calls in the winter. 

"On [days of] extreme temperatures when they're below zero like this with the windchill we make sure cars are running, [deputies] have a warm drink if possible," Sheriff Mike Lukas said.  "They stay out of the elements as much as possible but there's accidents. There's all kinds of things that go on that our officers can't say we can't go to."

Sheriff Lukas said first responders have extra gear in their cars, plus more at the stations if they need them.         

Officers don't turn down a call just for weather, so regardless of the temperature, first responders go out to protect the community. 

As of 5 p.m. Friday the person in the river had not been found.

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