The Georgia Department of Transportation plans to begin pre-treating roads in northeast Georgia Friday morning at 6:00 in anticipation of the snow that is expected to move into the area Friday night.
For the 21 counties in northeast district, twelve brine tanks with a total of 69,000 gallons of the salt water solution will spray interstates and state routes, according to a GDOT press release. If snow and/or ice begin falling, crews will switch from brine application to snow plows and salt and gravel spreaders.
The Georgia DOT northeast district has the following resources to respond to the current winter weather event:
- 135 Snow plows
- 8,000 tons of salt
- 20,000 tons of gravel
- 100,000 gallons of brine
- 247 employees on call covering 5,667 lane miles
- District has two shifts; 125 employees per shift
When freezing precipitation hits, keeping the roads clear of ice and snow for emergency vehicles becomes a top priority, according to the release.
Georgia DOT crews focus first on clearing interstates and heavily traveled state routes, and will specifically target areas vulnerable to freezing, like hills, ramps, bridges and interchanges.
Motorists are urged to:
- Slow down and stay behind the snowplows. The road behind the plow will be the safest place to drive. Allow at least ten car lengths between your vehicle and snowplows or hopper spreaders.
- Do not pass. The plows are wide, and sometimes a group of trucks will work in tandem to clear snow quickly, especially on major highways.
- Be particularly aware of black ice conditions on surfaces such as bridge decks and entrance and exit ramps late tonight and the early hours of tomorrow morning.
- Remember that technology helps, but only to a point. Four-wheel drive, anti-lock brakes and traction control are beneficial advancements in today's cars, trucks and SUVs, but they can't take the place of good driving habits and the need to reduce speed on snowy or icy roads.
- Call 511 or visit www.511ga.org to get current information on road conditions. Georgia 511 is a free phone service that provides real-time traffic and travel information statewide, such as traffic conditions, incidents, lane closures, and delays due to inclement weather. Callers also can transfer to operators to request assistance or report incidents 24 hours a day, seven days a week. More information is available atwww.511ga.org