MADISON, Wis. - Gov. Scott Walker called the Wisconsin National Guard to state active duty ahead of a strong winter storm that could bring more than 12 inches of snow and freezing rain, and winds up to 50 mph.
Walker's emergency declaration at 6 p.m. Wednesday authorized Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar, Wisconsin adjutant general, to activate the National Guard
By late Thursday, two more states, Iowa and Minnesota, had activated personnel, bringing to nearly 250 the number of troops awaiting a new onslaught of snow, according to National Guard Bureau figures.
The National Weather Service called for heavy snow from northeast Iowa and southeast Minnesota into north central Wisconsin.
Blizzard conditions are expected, with snow from six to 13 inches.
The Wisconsin National Guard will stage 10 winter force packages, consisting of approximately 140 Guard members and equipment in seven-person teams, with seven force packages in the northwest and three force packages in the southeast areas of the state.
They will augment local authorities with manpower and mobility, performing such emergency response duties as rendering aid to stranded motorists and performing welfare checks in affected areas. They will provide 24-hour coverage in 12-hour shifts.
"This kind of support is one of our core responsibilities," Dunbar said. "We plan and prepare for contingencies such as this, and we will be ready to assist when needed."