As late as Monday afternoon, St. Croix County law enforcement continued to pull cars from county ditches, as accumulating snow, high winds and subzero temperatures created treacherous travel conditions over the weekend.
From 6 a.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Monday, authorities across the county responded to roughly 173 vehicle-related calls, according to data provided by St. Croix County Sheriff's Office, which kept responders on the move.
"A lot of times we're just running call-to-call, which is usually car-to-car in the ditch," said St. Croix County Sheriff Scott Knudson. "Really, what we were trying to do this last weekend was make sure that we could get folks out of there and get them to a safe, warm place and come back for the vehicle later."
Calls involving a vehicle in the ditch totaled 101.
When it comes to storms like this, Knudson said, there are a number of occasions that require assistance from county and city maintenance, local snow plow drivers just to get to their calls, or tow trucks to pull vehicles stuck in the roadways.
"It's really a juggling act," Knudson said.
At the center of that juggling act are the dispatchers.
"They are really some hidden unsung heroes that people don't necessarily see out and about, but they're really the coordinators for us and they're also finding tow trucks for us, they're also dispatching county maintenance trucks to plow out areas that we can't get to," Knudson said. "They really orchestrate much of the direction we're going."
Total calls countywide from 6 a.m. Feb. 23 to 8 a.m. Feb. 25, according to SCCSO:
101 - vehicles in ditch
22 - accidents (property damage)
1 - accident with personal injury
24 - disabled vehicles
25 - traffic complaints
"I can't say enough about the job that any of the first responders and the responders did this weekend," Knudson said. "That includes the county plow trucks that were out all hours of the night for extended periods, the tow truck drivers that responded and did everything they could to help open up roadways. It was a lot of moving parts."