Slick roads lead to messy Monday morning commute

176 crashes reported statewide
Posted at 12:27 PM, Dec 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-19 13:27:12-05

Getting to work was far from easy for many Southeast Wisconsin commuters Monday morning.

One person was killed after a pickup truck veered off the South end of the Hoan Bridge.

During the morning rush hour, accidents on I-43 NB had areas near National Avenue and Capitol Drive at a standstill.

As of 10:30 a.m. the Wisconsin DOT reported 176 crashes, statewide, since midnight.

Gina Paige, Wisconsin DOT Communications Manager, said Monday's frigid conditions were prime for black ice.

"With the sun coming out and melting some of the snow, and then the cold temperatures re-freezing it, it's really increasing the probability of black ice," Paige said.

She added Wisconsin DOT is urging drivers to slow down, leave ample space between their vehicle and the one in front of them, and keep an eye out for slick spots.

Matt Reese, who was driving an eight-wheeler on I-43 Monday, said he had noticed several accidents on his way to Milwaukee.

"I passed about five of them," Reese said.

He added he always looks out for icy roadways during the winter months.

"I watch out for darker colored roads," Reese said. "That usually shows there's ice out there, or at least there could be."

Due to the very cold temperatures, Paige said Wisconsin State Patrol Troopers would be checking rest areas and road shoulders for any drivers stranded due to car troubles or medical emergencies.

She added the DOT's Freeway Service Team would also be patrolling and watching out for drivers stuck in the frigid elements.

"We're going to see some people with issues starting their car, or else they get disabled on the side of the road for a flat tire, or with running out of fuel," Paige said.

Drivers like Richard Torres were already having problems Monday morning.

He was patching up a flat tire at a gas station on Holt Avenue.

"I had a flat tire this morning," Torres said. "It's because of the cold. It broke the seal."

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