Snowstorm, Impending Frigid Temperatures Prompt Wisconsin Governor To Declare State Of Emergency

Updated 1:20 p.m.

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers declared a state of emergency on Monday due to severe winter weather.

The order directs all state agencies to assist in any emergency response and recovery efforts because of the snowstorm and cold that hit Wisconsin and other Midwest states. Evers also activated the Wisconsin National Guard to assist with local emergency responders, if necessary.

Parts of Wisconsin received up to 7 inches of snow as of Monday morning, with snow continuing in the afternoon. Following the snow, temperatures will not rise above zero through Thursday, with wind chills as low as 50 below.

Original Story 8:18 a.m.

Snow throughout southeastern Wisconsin has caused county courts and services to close Monday. Milwaukee Public Schools, Marquette University and UW-Milwaukee are all closed as well, amongst a long list of other schools and businesses.

But the snow clean-up crew at the Department of Public works is not off today. They’re busy trying to clear the roads. 

"We have 213 pieces of equipment deployed around the city of Milwaukee. We began salting operations around midnight and began plowing shortly thereafter and that is going to be a continuing ongoing process for quite a while," said Brian DeNeve, marketing and communications officer for the department of public works.

DeNeve says the crew isn’t going to let up for at least the next 24-hours. He emphasizes that crews are working very hard, but the rate of snowfall is a challenge. 

The winter weather is also impacting air travel, there are some flights that are going out as normal, but there are also delays and cancelations.

“The airlines have proactively canceled some flights. That actually makes everyone’s job easier because it allows our crews to get in and really clean off the ramps where aircraft park and do a really nice job. And from the airline standpoint, they’re able to put their airplanes into service in areas of the county that are not being hit by severe weather,” said Pat Rowe a spokesperson for General Mitchell.

Rowe says that as the snow tapers off Monday, she expects things to get back to normal.

However, it will be unseasonably cold. Temperatures are expected to drop below zero and will not rise to above zero until Friday. When you account for the wind chill, the lowest temperatures will feel like 35 to 50 below.

Stay home if you can cautions DeNeve, "I want to emphasize that with the conditions, essentially, don’t leave if you don’t have to. If you do have to travel, give yourself extra time. Be patient with the conditions of the roads ... ultimately be safe."

The winter storm warning is in effect until 6 p.m Monday.