Thursday’s surprise ice event generated 90 accident calls to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, sheriff Wes Revels said.
Revels described road conditions Thursday morning as “glare ice” as vehicles crashed and slid off roadways throughout the county.
“We’ve had accidents on the major highways, side roads − just all over,” Revels said.
According to the Wisconsin State Patrol, crashes bottled up traffic on:
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- Interstate 90 west of Tomah, where traffic in both directions was shut down for 4½ hours due to multiple crashes and icy conditions.
- Interstate 90 near Sparta, where westbound traffic was shut down for four hours.
- Interstate 94 north of Tomah, where a semi crash blocked eastbound traffic for nearly three hours.
- Interstate 90-94 near Oakdale, where westbound traffic was reduced to one lane.
- Highway 21 near Enterprise Road, where a crash blocked traffic in both directions for 3½ hours.
Revels said several of the crashes resulted in injuries. He said slick conditions and backed-up traffic made it difficult for law enforcement, emergency personnel and road crews to quickly respond.
There was little advance notice of the storm.
“It sort of surprised us,” Revels said.
Revels said his department had responded to all but four of the accident calls by 2 p.m. He said by mid-afternoon, when temperatures reached the upper 30s, the main highways were fine but that scattered slick spots remained on the side roads.
La Crosse was impacted with 34 crashes reported in the city and 83 in La Crosse County.
Tomah Journal editor Steve Rundio can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.