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NCDOT Division 5 Crews Ready for Winter Weather Cleanup in Latest Storm

Raleigh -NCDOT crews in Division 5, which includes Wake, Durham, Franklin, Granville, Person, Vance and Warren counties, spent the day working on final preparations for the winter storm heading for the Triangle and counties to the north.

Forecasts on Tuesday afternoon indicate while the Raleigh-Durham area in the southern part of the Division may get 1 to 2 inches of snow, followed by a 1/4 inch of ice, northern counties could face at least six inches of snow, topped off by ice.

Crews in the Division did some touch up brining of some interstate and primary road bridges and ramps today to add to the prep work that was done on Monday. There were also crew reassignments to make sure enough personnel were in place to handle the major roads once the bad weather hits.

Because the forecast includes ice, crews are expected to rely on both salt and a salt-sand mixture to clear the roads, in additional to plowing if needed. Division 5 has more than 4,000 tons of salt on hand, added another 800 tons today, and was planning to get another 800 tons shipped in Wednesday from the Port of Wilmington.

Unlike the previous storm when the temperature dipped into the teens, which is too cold for salt to melt snow and ice, the temperature over the next few days is expected to remain in the 20's and low 30's. That will allow any salt put down to continue to help melt any frozen precipitation.

NCDOT Deputy Chief Engineer Jon Nance explains how ice differs from snow.

NCDOT has produced several videos showing how maintenance crews 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 reminded that even a 1/4 inch of ice can bring down trees and power lines, blocking roadways. Drivers who encounter downed power lines should not try to drive over them because of the extreme danger. Instead, call 911 for assistance.

DOT and utility crews have to clear debris from the road to allow access to the power lines, which could delay road clearing in some areas.

NCDOT offers the following safety tips for driving in winter weather:

  • Clear windows and mirrors before driving;
  • Reduce speed and leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles in case either vehicle goes into a skid;
  • Plan for significant additional travel time to reach your destination.
  • Approach bridges and overpasses them with extreme caution and do not apply your brakes while on a bridge or ramp 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 also trying to stop; and
  • If you have a cell 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 is for emergencies only.

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 i

***NCDOT***

2/15/2018 5:24 PM

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