Vehicles slide off roads -- and deputies are frustrated

Published: Feb. 11, 2019 at 6:53 AM CST
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Vehicles big and small littered the ditches of Northeast Wisconsin Monday.

A Sunday snow storm dumped 3 to 6 inches of snow across the region. Drivers had a rude awakening on Monday morning. "Roads are snow covered and extremely slippery," the Brown County Sheriff's Office tweeted.

Interstate 41 southbound was the scene of numerous slide-offs. Traffic at the Scheuring Road exit in De Pere was averaging just 25 mph Monday morning.

for the Timesaver Traffic interactive map.

Green Bay Police closed the westbound lanes of West Mason Street at Country Club Rd., where a car hit a pole.

"It is slick on the roads! Our officers have been responding to several crashes this morning," Green Bay Police said. "Please slow down and allow for extra space between you and other vehicles. Trucks, cars, 4- wheel drive or's slippery for all!"

Despite the warning signs for slippery conditions, car after car after car wound up in the ditch along I-43 near Highway 172.

"In a six-hour period we had over 65 cars in the ditch or crashes, since 4:30 this morning until 10:30 this morning, we had over 65," Sheriff's Capt. Dan Sandberg said.

Wisconsin Department of Transportation cameras show several vehicles in the ditch along I-41 at County U (Wrightstown Road) exit.

By mid-morning, the slick conditions improved, allowing authorities to lift the tow ban put in place hours earlier.

With another round of heavy snow just 12 hours away, there's a sense of urgency.

"If you get vehicles start piling up in those areas, we don't want vehicles that are already sitting there in the snow getting impacted by new vehicles, so we do have that urgency. We want to get those vehicles out because we'd much rather have a vehicle go in the ditch that strike another vehicle," Sandberg said.

Travel will be worse Tuesday as another winter storm socks Northeast Wisconsin. The National Weather Service has issued a

from midnight Monday through midnight Tuesday.

Capt. Sandberg admits frustration with Monday's mess.

"Probably two-thirds of the way through the winter season and we still have people making some of the same errors that we shouldn't be making right now," he said. "They should be understanding that, respect the weather, and that vehicle is no guarantee that it's going to be able to handle any type of weather, especially based on driver input with either brake or steering, so you've got to respect the weather and slow down and be patient."

The Winnebago County Sheriff's Office also tweeted, "Snow means slow."

StormCenter 2 Chief Meteorologist Steve Beylon says: "By dawn tomorrow [Tuesday], 2-5" of snow will already be on the ground, making for a difficult morning commute. By the end of Tuesday, snowfall totals will range from 6-12". Some of the highest totals may be closer to the lakeshore, as a blustery northeast wind blows off of Lake Michigan."