CHARLOTTE -Weather forecasts are predicting copious amounts of snow and traces of ice in Charlotte today, and the N.C. Department of Transportation has staged more than 100 pieces of equipment across Mecklenburg County, including salt spreaders, plows and motorgraders. As a winter storm warning remains in effect through 6 p.m. Thursday, nearly 70 employees are in place to continue treating and clearing interstates and primary routes through the duration of the storm.
Since the department began treatment efforts Sunday, NCDOT has placed more than 90,000 gallons of brine solution and 5,100 tons of salt on I-77, I-85, I-485, and I-277, as well as major primary routes in the county. The National Weather Service is predicting seven-11 inches of snow and up to a tenth of an inch of ice for Charlotte and surrounding communities like Concord and Monroe. Heavier snowfall is expected to arrive this afternoon and evening, reaching up to an inch an hour at times.
NCDOT offers the following safety tips for driving in winter weather:
- Clear windows and mirrors;
- Reduce speed and leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles;
- Approach bridges and overpasses them with extreme caution and do not apply your brakes while on a bridge unless necessary;
- If you begin to slide, take your foot off the gas and turn the steering wheel in the direction of the slide. Do not apply the brakes as that will cause further loss of control of the car;
- Come to a complete stop or yield the right of way when approaching an intersection in case any vehicles coming from other directions lose control of their vehicles while trying to stop; and
- If you have a cellular phone, take it with you. You can contact the Highway Patrol statewide by calling *HP (*47) or call law enforcement by dialing 911. But please don't call 911 to check on road conditions. That line must be kept open for emergencies.
For real-time travel information at any time, call 511, visit www.ncdot.gov/travel or follow NCDOT on Twitter at www.ncdot.gov/travel/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 and bookmark it to save for future use.
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.