Wisconsin State Patrol Blasted For Slow Response

A report released Thursday says the State Patrol's response to the traffic backup that left more than two thousand motorists stranded on an interstate near Madison was slow and ineffective.

A report by National Guard Brigadier General Donald Dunbar says the State Patrol was slow to recognize an emergency existed February sixth, which meant it missed chances to keep the backup from growing.

Governor Doyle asked Dunbar to investigate the emergency response to the backup that left motorists stranded overnight on Interstate 39-90. The backup started when semitrailers were unable to get up a hill because of the storm that dumped more than a foot of snow on southern Wisconsin.

Dunbar's 170-page report catalogs missteps by numerous state agencies, but saves its harshest criticism for the patrol, which was the lead responder.

The report says the State Patrol did not view the backup as significant because there was no physical crash and its incident commander was slow to respond.

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