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Winter Storm Caused Closings, Traffic Backups

The winter storm that sat over the Milwaukee area on Tuesday and Wednesday dropped far more snow than originally predicted, leading to school closings and treacherous road conditions.

Updated 9:15 p.m.

The winter storm that started Tuesday and ended overnight Wednesday into Thursday was originally predicted to leave little impact. 

But conditions were just right for the storm to grow, and it ended up dumping wet, slushy snow that closed schools and made roads dangerous for several days. 

Patch media partners WISN 12 News said this storm didn't follow the predictions.

Computers and humans alike had originally predicted two to four inches of snow from this system, which earlier had buried the Plains states in a fresh blanket of snow.

However, some uncharacteristic lake enhancement took place late Tuesday afternoon, driving snow totals much higher.

"A humbling storm for all meteorologists in southeast Wisconsin," said WeatherWatch 12 chief meteorologist Mark Baden. 

"It was quite a storm," he said. "I think the most surprising thing about this storm was the amount of moisture it was able to transport."

Updated Wednesday morning

Traffic is slow on the freeways this morning, with slippery stretches and snow making travel more difficult than usual.

According to the Wisconsin DOT's traffic map, traffic speeds vary from 30-55 mph from West Brown Deer Road to Downtown, in both directions. Traffic on I-794 is also going slow, between 30 and 45 mph. The Marquette Interchange appears to be moving fairly well, except for northbound traffic on I-43/94 turning east onto I-794. That ramp is moving at speeds less than 20 mph.

Here are some school and business closings from our media partners at WISN 12 News:

  • Whitefish Bay Schools have been closed, as have Dominican High School, Holy Family School and Santa Monica School.
  • United Methodist Church is closed.
  • Milwaukee Art Museum is closed.
  • The JCC is open today for all programs and activities. Some classes are dependent upon instructors ability to get to the JCC, please call prior to your class to confirm. 

If you have heard of any other closings, please let us know in the comments section.

WISN 12 News predicts Whitefish Bay will receive 7 to 12 inches through the end of the night. So far, 9.5 inches of snow have fallen in Brown Deer, according to the National Weather Service.

winter weather advisory is in effect until midnight Wednesday night for Ozaukee, Waukesha, Milwaukee, Racine and Kenosha counties.

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