Storms roll through Rock County

JANESVILLE—Police, deputies, utility and public works/highway crews were responding to reports of trees, branches and wires down throughout Rock County after a severe thunderstorm rolled through between 5 and 6 a.m.

“We're getting the county highway crews out to check (out these reports) as fast as we can,” said a lead dispatcher at the Rock County Communications Center.

“People need to drive careful and need to be aware they may be there,” she said of debris in roads.

Some roads might be blocked, but no major road blockage, accidents or detours were reported as of 6 a.m., the dispatcher said.

Downtown Janesville experienced a “fairly significant power outage” due to a thunderstorm that rolled through the area earlier Tuesday morning, said Sgt. Joshua Norem of the Janesville Police Department.

The general area affected was Franklin Street, west to High Street, in between Court Street and Centerway and a lot of downtown businesses including the police department that was able to operate with a backup generator, he said.

Power went out around 1 a.m. and was restored by 3:25 a.m. Norem said.

The storm also caused several residential and business alarms to go off, but when police responded they found the alarms were triggered by weather or were electric related, he said.

No street flooding occurred, but some tree branches and garbage cans blew over and into roads. They were cleared right away, he said.

“Everything appears to be back up and functioning normal,” Norem said.

The National Weather Service in Sullivan issued a tornado watch in effect until 9 a.m. Tuesday for all of south central and southeast Wisconsin, including Green and Rock counties.