The weather has made for quite an interesting spring in the northwoods. According to WJFW Newswatch 12 meteorologist Geoff Weller, the historic snowstorm on the weekend of April 13-15 dropped 18.2 inches of snow in Antigo. Other areas of Langlade County received almost 20 inches. Wind gusts up to 50 miles per hour created blowing and drifting, which made driving difficult or impossible. Road crews worked overtime to ensure residents and emergency services could reach their destinations.
The snow that is left is causing other concerns. Weather predictions forecast warm weather for the days to come. Warm weather creates the potential for snow to rapidly melt, causing significant runoff and the possibility of flooding. Historically, the only time there is severe flooding is when there is a combination of frozen ground and melting snow, sometimes accompanied by rain.
The County Highway Department has been working hard to ensure our flood response plans are up to date. Equipment and other resources are on standby in the event of significant flooding. In the event of evacuation, the American Red Cross and Salvation Army are prepared to provide sheltering and feeding during the disaster.
In case of a flooding emergency, or any other emergencies in the area, Jim Balzer, Emergency Management Director for Langlade County, encourages everyone to sign up for Everbridge notifications to receive alerts about emergencies and other important community news. You can receive the alerts via home, mobile or business phones, email, or text messages. To sign up, visit alcinfo.com and in the menu click Explore, Everbridge Notifications, and you will be taken to the website where you can sign up.
If Spring Brook should flood this year, there may be those of you who would need special help during an evacuation due to the physical disabilities or special transportation needs.
If so, Emergency Management has a form you can complete that will assist the emergency worker in fulfilling your special needs. The form is available by contacting the Emergency Management office or more information can be found on the Langlade County Emergency Management’s web page on Langlade County’s website, www.co.langlade.wi.us/departments/sheriffs-office/emergency-management/. If you have any other concerns, feel free to contact Balzer at 715-627-6257.