DOT crews prepare for winter weather - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

DOT crews prepare for winter weather

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

The Charlotte Department of Transportation upgraded its winter weather road treatment plan.

CDOT is now treating Charlotte's major thoroughfares, connector streets, bus routes and bridges and culverts today with salt for the on-going winter weather event.   

City Street Maintenance crews are currently operating on a "Condition B" which will last for the duration of the storm. This condition calls for 32 trucks, 64 crew members and 16 support staff.

"Condition B" means salt brining is targeted on:

  • Bridges & culverts on City streets and selected NCDOT streets
  • Major thoroughfares
  • Connector streets
  • Bus routes
  • Hospital entrances
  • Emergencies

Black ice is a possibility on bridges, culverts, and low-lying areas as temperatures drop. Officials expect black ice could form as early as Friday afternoon.

Citizens should report icy road conditions by calling CharMeck 311.  Also, reports of routine icing on City streets can be called in to 704-336-3200.  Actual emergencies and accidents should be called in to 911.

NC DOT crews also prepared for winter weather.

Statewide, more than 1,900 trucks are equipped with snow plows and graders in addition to 325 front-end loaders and backhoes and 450 motor graders.  NCDOT has 146,500 tons of salt on hand. A typical statewide frozen precipitation event requires 40,000 tons of salt.

Here's what crews are doing across the state to prepare for the storm:

North Carolina Mountains and Foothills:

  • Crews are treating major roadways across the mountains and foothills with brine. Once that is completed, equipment will be refitted with plows and spreaders and be on standby until needed.

Greater Charlotte Area

  • Salt brine is being applied to interstates, U.S. and N.C. routes, bridges, ramps and main lines of primary roads. The process will pause during the afternoon commute and resume if needed later. Once that is completed, equipment will be refitted with plows and spreaders and be on standby until needed.

Triad Region

  • Salt brine is being applied to interstates, U.S. and N.C. routes, bridges, ramps and main lines of primary roads. The process will pause during the afternoon commute and resume if needed later. Once that is completed, equipment will be refitted with plows and spreaders and be on standby until needed.

Triangle Region

  • Crews began brining interstates and major routes, bridges, ramps and main lines of primary roads on Wednesday and continue today. Once that is completed, equipment will be refitted with plows and spreaders and be on standby until needed.

Eastern North Carolina

  • Crews began brining interstate routes, including I-95 and I-40, today and will then move on to work on U.S. and N.C. highways and other major routes. Once that is completed, Once that is completed, equipment will be refitted with plows and spreaders and be on standby until needed.

Coastal Areas

  • Crews in northeastern coastal counties are brining major routes. Forecasts call for fewer problems southeast of U.S. 64, so NCDOT crews will be on standby in far southeastern counties and will go into action if it appears icy weather will affect those areas.

As crews continue to pre treat roads, remember to leave plenty of distance between your vehicle and the trucks spraying brine.

For safety while driving, also remember:

  • Slow down.
  • Bridges and overpasses freeze first.
  • Put away the cell phone!
  • Use only gentle pressure on both the accelerator and the brakes to avoid skidding.
  • Give other motorists plenty of room in case you or the other drivers begin to slide.

In South Carolina, state DOT crews prepped the roads Thursday and deployed crews in the upstate Friday afternoon.

The following resources were deployed:

  • 321 maintenance employees involved in road operations
  • 345 tons of Salt
  • 90 tons of Sand
  • 164,670 gallons of Salt Brine and CaCl used
  • 144 pieces of equipment in use

The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) has activated its online site for winter weather road conditions. For current conditions, go to www.scdot.org and click on "Winter Weather Road Conditions."

Currently, the affected area is predicted to be west of I-95 and north of Interstate 20. It is very likely that road conditions will be very poor if a significant storm hits. SCDOT will focus primarily on interstate routes and move to lower priority routes as conditions allow.

SCDOT's response varies by area of the state:

In Kershaw, Lee Lexington and Richland counties, crews will begin Friday as a normal day and will be prepared to respond dependent upon the event severity. Snow and ice equipment is being hooked up. Crews will report Friday afternoon and evening if needed.

In Abbeville, Anderson, Greenwood, Laurens, and Newberry counties, SCDOT crews will be pretreating with salt brine. These operations are scheduled to begin no later than 7 a.m. with the interstates as the first priority followed by the county's bridges.

McCormick, Edgefield, and Saluda counties will begin Friday as a normal day. The weather forecast will be monitored and adjustments will be made as necessary.

Oconee and Pickens counties will continue with regular schedule Friday morning with the decision made later to send employees home to begin shift work. Crews in Greenville, Oconee, and Pickens counties will begin pretreatment today and Friday morning. Spartanburg is currently pretreating overpasses north of I-85.

York, Cherokee, Union, Chester, Lancaster and Fairfield county crews will begin pre-treatment activities (salt brine) Thursday during daylight hours. Regular de-icing operational shifts will begin Friday morning and last until Saturday morning at this time.

Darlington, Marlboro, Dillon, Florence, Marion, Horry, Georgetown and Williamsburg counties are applying brine on bridges and interstate routes Thursday.

Roads in Dorchester, Charleston, Berkeley, Colleton, Beaufort and Jasper counties are not forecast to be impacted by the storm and the predicted storm severity does not warrant assistance crews at this time.

In Aiken, Barnwell, Calhoun, Clarendon, Orangeburg, Bamberg, Allendale and Hampton counties, salt spreaders will be loaded Friday morning. Each county will be monitoring conditions and have crews on standby, if needed.

The State Traffic Management Center will be operational.

The SCDOT Director of Maintenance staff is monitoring the forecast and conditions statewide.

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