Outdoor work continues despite the bitter cold

The sun shines bright but it's still cold outside
The sun shines bright but it's still cold outside

BROWN COUNTY - The relentless cold may be slowing down some of the people who have to work outside, but it doesn't stop their work completely.

When you're in the home building business, on any given day, weather can be your friend or foe.

"We deal with it. We build all year long. In fact, two weeks ago we dug two more basements…so there's frost on the ground," said Ryan Radue, home builder.

Despite the frozen ground, Ryan Radue's houses keep popping up all over Northeast Wisconsin.

"We just finished two projects. We got five of them underway," Radue said.

Potential buyers took a sneak peek inside one of Radue's homes this weekend. He says his crew worked in below zero temperatures to get the job done.

But sometimes it's difficult.

"Digging foundation takes a little more, and pouring concrete's a little more difficult. It just takes a little more time and effort to keep everything warm, and to keep everybody warm, but we still make our way through," Radue said.

Home builders aren't the only ones that have to keep working through the cold. Green Bay Public Works says it's been a challenge to keep the roads free from ice and snow and they've been working almost non-stop.

"This season's been our most extreme cold temperatures that we've had in about 30 years," said Tony Fietzer, street superintendent with Green Bay Public Works.

Even though we've seen an occasional warm up, those spring-like days are rough on road crews.

"When it starts to melt, we have an opportunity to try and plow off any of the freeze pack or snow pack that's built on the roads. But once it starts to break free, if we don't have a long enough window to get it off and it refreezes," Fietzer said.

That's what happened last week as ice covered many residential area streets like a thick sheet of shatterproof glass.

"That 20 below zero mornings where we had extreme ice, scraping doesn't work the greatest when we have that low of a temp," Fietzer said.

Some of the equipment you see clearing the roads won't be going away anytime soon.

Fietzer says crews will continue to put forth their best efforts despite a long and trying winter.