Emergency officials prepare for weekend snow event - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Emergency officials prepare for weekend snow event

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WISCONSIN (WKOW)--Emergency officials statewide are preparing for a significant snow event this weekend. With a few relatively minor winter weather events under our belts, Wisconsin drivers now face an even greater challenge, a snow-covered holiday travel weekend.

"I think our biggest message to people with the holidays and travel is just being prepared with the snow storm," Dane County EMS Specialist Carrie Meier says.

Workers at Dane County Emergency Management will be watching the storm this weekend and have crews on standby. If the snow event gets bad enough nearly a dozen workers will fill the emergency response center in downtown Madison. Representatives from the Red Cross and other local groups will also send representatives to provide assistance.

"In Wisconsin we get snow and just being prepared, slowing down, giving yourself extra time to get somewhere is a huge piece of safety," Meier says.

AAA expects to help more than four million drivers during the holidays. They're estimating that more than 94 million people will travel more than 50 miles to visit family and friends.

Travel experts say drivers should prepare a winter survival kit before hitting the road. They suggest packing items like blankets, a phone, water bottles and food in case you get stranded.

"In most cases AAA recommends that people stay with their vehicle," Pam Moen from AAA Wisconsin says. "Call for help. They'll ask what kind of situation you're in and authorities will advise you if that is not the best thing to do, but in most cases we advise it's best to stay with your vehicle.

Besides holiday travelers this weekend there will also be thousands of traveling college students statewide with classes ending Friday. The UW-Madison is also holding their winter commencement ceremony Sunday morning. University officials are expecting thousands of family members and friends to come and cheer on the more than 1,200 college graduates this semester.

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