RALEIGH - N.C. Department of Transportation maintenance crews throughout southern North Carolina are preparing roads for the winter weather anticipated to arrive in the area tomorrow.
Maintenance crews in NCDOT's Division Six, which includes Bladen, Columbus, Cumberland, Harnett and Roberson counties have 65 crew members and 20 trucks out placing salt brine on primary routes. Salt brine is a water and salt solution that is 23 percent salt and helps keep ice from bonding to the pavement.
Following the winter weather, crews will be back out on the roads to plow if necessary and put down salt and sand where needed.
NCDOT has produced several videos explaining how maintenance crews prepare for winter weather months in advance, how they determine when to use salt and sand, and how they decide which roads to clear first. These videos and many others are available on the NCDOT YouTube page.
Motorists are encouraged to use extreme caution and remember these safety tips: Slow down; Bridges and overpasses freeze first; Put down the cell phone and focus on the road; Use only gentle pressure on both the accelerator and the brakes to avoid skidding; and Give other motorists plenty of room in case you or other drivers begin to slide.
Motorists should also be aware of the potential for significant ice accumulation and high winds, which could result in downed trees and power lines. NCDOT will work closely with local power companies to clear roads as quickly as possible once the utility providers have removed downed power lines and trees.
You can also get emergency information from the N.C. Department of Public Safety at http://readync.org, and download the ReadyNC app to help you prepare for everything from road conditions to severe storms on a daily basis. It is available for free in the AppStore for iPhones and Google Play for Android devices.
For real-time travel information at any time, call 511, visit www.ncdot.gov/travel or follow NCDOT on Twitter. Another option is NCDOT Mobile, a phone-friendly version of the NCDOT website. To access it, type "m.ncdot.gov" into the browser of your smartphone. Then, bookmark it to save for future reference.