RALEIGH – As state transportation crews prepared for the next winter storm, officials urged people to prepare by getting any needed supplies now because this storm will likely make travel conditions dangerous across central and eastern North Carolina.
“We’re getting ready for this storm. You need to be ready, too,” said State Transportation Secretary J. Eric Boyette. “Get prepared because once this storm hits, road conditions will quickly deteriorate, and you’ll need to stay off the roads.”
The storm, which is forecast to start today and then resume tomorrow afternoon into Saturday, is the second winter storm to hit North Carolina in less than a week and the third storm of 2022.
Nearly 800 NCDOT employees and contract crews, are working or preparing to treat roads for this storm. NCDOT and its contractors have more than 300 trucks and graders ready to work on roads through the weekend. NCDOT employees have also readied their chainsaws and other heavy equipment to make sure it’s ready to go to cut and remove any downed trees and debris. As of early Thursday afternoon, crews had applied nearly 1 million gallons of brine in central and eastern North Carolina and have restocked supplies of salt and sand to treat roads after the snow and freezing rain starts.
With rain coming in ahead of the winter weather, NCDOT is concerned that in some areas, the brine or salt might wash off the roads.
“Once the winter weather starts, the best thing you can do is stay home,” said N.C. Department of Transportation’s Chief Operating Officer Beau Memory. “Staying off the roads will make it easier for our crews and emergency responders to do their jobs.”
Like all industries, NCDOT has been impacted by COVID-19 and staffing shortages. Transportation officials are asking that people be patient, as crews may not be able to respond in certain area as quickly as in the past.
Officials in other areas of NCDOT are also preparing for what the storm could bring.
Based on the forecast, departures on all seven coastal ferry routes prior to 7 a.m. Friday have been canceled. Officials will monitor conditions at each ferry terminal and decide whether it’s safe to resume ferry routes based on road, ferry and wind conditions.
For information about the work NCDOT does before, during and after winter storms, please visit the NCDOT: Winter Storms web page.