RHINELANDER - Driving down Highway 17 in Oneida County should feel a little smoother this week. It's thanks to a crew that isn't too thrilled about unseasonably warm weather.
Oneida County Highway Department workers patched potholes with blow torches, pressure guns, and hot tar. The process is called poly patching. The workers blow out cold patch potholes, heat the tar to about 400 degrees, then fill in the hole and seal it.
"Every time we start getting frost coming out of the ground again we're getting big holes," crew member Darren Friday said. "[We don't really like the unseasonable warm up] because it's a lot of work."
Poly patching lasts around a year, compared to just a couple days with cold patch. The Highway 17 crew worked that stretch all week, which always has a steady stream of traffic.
"You've got your nose to the ground, not behind you so you rely on your partner to watch for traffic," Friday said. "You gotta do it... I would say most of the public that sees us out here appreciates what we're doing because these holes, as you can see, are pretty huge."
The week was slow-going for the crew. They spent three days just working on the Eisenhower Parkway intersection near Kwik Trip.
We'll tell you why the Northwoods Transit Connection which provides transportation in Oneida and Vilas Counties may discontinue some operations temporarily.
We'll bring you the details of a Rhinelander swimming coach who has resigned from her position after her third year as head coach for the girls and boys team.
And we talk to a group of people who are walking from Portage County to Madison to help bring awareness to the dangers of drinking and driving after a motorcyclist was killed by a drunk driver in July.
We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.
MADISON - Republican legislators are circulating a bill aimed at ending the federal requirement to use reformulated gas in six southeastern Wisconsin counties.
The legislation asks President Donald Trump's administration to grant a reprieve from use of the specially formulated gas that reduces ozone pollution. The requirement was implemented in 1995 in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, Washington, Racine and Kenosha counties. Supporters say the gas is no longer needed because of advancements in emission control equipment.
RHINELANDER - An Oneida County detective believes that if a toddler hadn't been left in the care of his stepmother, 28-year-old Ellen Tran, he might still be alive.
Twenty-month-old Avery Edwards died in April of blunt force trauma at a Rhinelander home, and Tran is charged with first-degree reckless homicide in the death. She said the child slipped in the shower, but evidence pointed to an intentional act.
On Wednesday, Ellen Tran's husband, Trung, was also charged in the death of his son. Prosecutors say he knew leaving the toddler with his wife was dangerous, and he deserves some of the blame.
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