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Brining Operations Under Way as Another Winter Storm Moves into the Charlotte Area

Charlotte - Trucks carrying salt brine are back on roads throughout the Charlotte region today as another round of winter weather threatens the area.

In Mecklenburg County, nine N.C. Department of Transportation trucks will work to brine bridges and overpasses this afternoon. Brine is a solution of water and salt that NCDOT uses as a method of pre-treating roadways in anticipation of snow or ice accumulating on the roadway. The brine contains 23 percent salt -the industry standard -and provides a number of benefits, including lowering the freezing temperature of water and preventing ice and snow from bonding to the road's surface.

Fifteen contract trucks will come in at midnight to clear any ice or snow accumulation on Mecklenburg County roads. NCDOT will also have an additional 15 trucks working to spread brine on the region's interstates tonight after rush hour, focusing on bridges, overpasses and other known problem areas. Another 15 trucks will arrive between 2 and 3 a.m. Tuesday to spread salt on the interstates as needed.

With additional wintry precipitation a possibility later this week, Mecklenburg County and surrounding counties will continue to monitor the forecast and update response plans if necessary. There will also be crews available to respond to any calls or reports of slick spots overnight tonight.

As always during a winter weather event, motorists are encouraged to stay off the roads unless travel is absolutely necessary. If you must venture out:

  • Clear all windows and mirrors of snow and ice. It might be helpful to let your vehicle run for several minutes with both front and rear defrosters on to help the process along.
  • Remove as much loose snow as possible from your vehicle's trunk, roof and hood to keep snow from blowing off and obscuring your vision and that of drivers behind you. Clear off your rear bumper to expose the license plate.
  • Be sure that headlights, tail lights, external mirrors and marker lights are free of obscuring snow and ice.
  • Bring your cell phone with you, even on short trips. You never know when you might need it.
  • Slow down and leave plenty of space between you and the vehicle in front. We can't stress this enough. Excessive speed is the number one cause of winter weather accidents.
  • Do not use your cruise control.
  • Drive smoothly, without sudden accelerating, braking or turning.
  • Bridges and overpasses freeze long before other parts of the roadway. Use extreme caution and avoid using your brakes on the bridges (this is where slowing down and leaving plenty of space is most important).
  • If you find yourself behind one of our vehicles, be sure to leave plenty of space so they can safely apply the brine, sand or salt on the roads. They are usually slower than the rest of the traffic, so pass with extreme caution.

For real-time travel information, visit DriveNC.gov or follow NCDOT on Twitter

***NCDOT***

8/23/2018 1:09 PM