NewsLocal News


Hurricane Florence having impacts on Wisconsin

Posted at 2:00 PM, Sep 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-14 15:02:01-04

MILWAUKEE -- While the storm is nearly 1,000 miles away, Florence is already making impacts on Wisconsin. However, it's not in an area to be expected.

Flights out of Mitchell International airport were smooth all morning. There were even flights to Charlotte this morning which weren't disrupted because of the storm. Fears of mass disruptions had people concerned because Charlotte is the second largest hub for American Airlines and Atlanta, with one of the busiest airports in the country, is just a few hours south of where the storm made a direct hit. 
Further north, 29 Wisconsin Red Cross volunteers are waiting out the storm to begin helping victims. 
"The last day has been raining off and on," Hillary Wanecke, volunteer with the Wisconsin Red Cross said. "It comes in bands. The wind has been constant but not bad."

Wanecke is in Ederton, N.C. which is on the outskirts of the storm to the north. She says the damage hasn't been too bad so far, but they're dealing with other issues from Mother Nature.

"Twice this morning we've had to shelter for tornadoes," Wanecke said. "I guess with this type of storm system, it really churns things up. They had tornado sightings just eight miles away."

She says the concern for them isn't with winds right now, but the moisture.

"I think the concern is, even when it's at a category two, it's moving so slowly, it picks up an enormous amoutn of rain and water off the coast and dumps it," Wanecke said. "As Wisconsin knows, water can only take so much. We had that issue just last month."

Wanecke went to Texas for Hurricane Harvey last year and has helped in California with the wildfires. She knows while the storm is raging, this is figurative calm before the storm she's preparing for. She'll be there for the next two to three weeks helping victims. 

"We won't be leaving any time in the next day or so because the Red Cross definitely doesn't want us traveling any time there is a storm," Wanecke said. "We'll wait and see and play it by ear. That's the Red Cross way. Try to be flexible."