VDOT pre-treats area roads ahead of winter storm


HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) – A winter storm warning has been issued for most of the WAVY News 10 viewing area ahead of forecasted snow.

Rain will change to snow and between two to three inches of accumulation is expected locally, with higher amounts possible. This is all expected to begin late Thursday.

With the potential for snow in the forecast, local and state agencies are gearing up to keep you safe on the roads.

“We’ve been training year round, we’ve got our program in place,” said VDOT Communications Manager Holly Christopher.

VDOT has already started pre-treating roads with brine. That increases the freezing temperature of the road, which helps prevent ice from forming.

All of the interstates in Hampton Roads were being treated Wednesday. On Thursday, VDOT crews will pre-treat the roads in Accomac, Franklin and Williamsburg.

VDOT officials say they have more than 470 pieces of equipment ready to deal with snow and ice.

Once the snow falls, crews will start by clearing interstates, then primary roads and secondary roads and then they will work from there.

VDOT’s goal is to get all state-maintained roads passable within 48 hours after the winter storm ends.

Officials say even with their preparations they will need your help.

“So we pre-treat once and then when the snow hits, then our plows are deployed. And so if there are locations that are slippery or are starting to see accumulation, we would appreciate a call. We can’t see everything, all at once. So if drivers see something that needs attention, we encourage them to call our customer service line so that we can be notified and deploy our crews properly,” said Christopher.

Call 1-800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623) to report road hazards.

Officials ask that you try to avoid driving while the snow is falling. If you must drive at that time, make sure to pay close attention to the road conditions and give crews room to work.

Crews with Virginia Beach Public Works are also getting ready, putting brine on some roads and using sand and salt on others.

“It’s going to be plenty messy tomorrow evening, even without a lot of snow, so it’s going to require some treatment of the roads and streets,” said Drew Lankford, a spokesman for the Department of Public Works. “We’re taking a lot of our trucks today and converting them and putting the plows on them and sand mixes.”

Lankford says crews will begin 12 hour shifts at 6 p.m. Thursday and they will adjust as necessary.

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