COLUMBIA, MO (KMIZ)
Road crews across Mid-Missouri started pretreatment of priority routes ahead of the anticipated winter weather.
Columbia Public Works began pretreatment of main roads Friday and plans to continue pretreatment ahead of the snow Saturday morning.
Ashlyn Sherman, a spokesperson for Columbia Public Works said crews will continue to monitor road conditions throughout the day Saturday and overnight. Sherman said the department advises people to stay off of the roads Saturday and stock up on groceries and necessities Friday.
“Today is the day to go grocery shopping stock up on necessities before the winter weather event happens and continue to monitor the forecast as it is Missouri and the weather can always change,” Sherman said.
Jefferson City Public Works will monitor road conditions throughout the night and plan to pretreat roads early Saturday ahead of the precipitation. Britt Smith, the Operations Division Director for Jefferson City Public Works, said trucks are fully stocked and prepared to treat roads for the weekend as staff will be on standby.
Smith says crews are hoping for a dry snowfall Saturday because it won’t be as difficult to melt the snow down and treat roads. Smith says wet snow typically melts down and freezes with dropping temperatures, which requires crews to use chemicals in order to prevent icy road conditions.
Temperatures are expected to drop into the low teens Sunday which could cause the salt crews apply to roads ineffective. Smith says they will have to use a liquid calcium chloride to mix with the salt, which can withstand temperatures into the teens.
“Our main concern with this storm is, a lot of times you have storms that start off cold but then it warms up on the tail end of it, we’re having the exact opposite this time, so with temperatures dropping on the tail end of this storm we’re going to have a pretty small window to be able to make a lot of progress because once those temperatures drop our salt uses a lot of effectiveness below 25 degrees and it keeps getting worse the colder it gets. So we’re going to get to a point where our salt’s pretty ineffective,” said Jason Shafer, the District Maintenance Engineer for MoDOT.
Shafer said crews will be out Friday pretreating main roads and highways ahead of the storm. Crews will continue pretreating roads into Saturday morning before the precipitation is forecasted to begin. Shafer says crews and trucks are fully stocked and prepared for whatever may happen during this winter storm, they are only concerned with how their materials will hold up with the threat of low temperatures.
“Regardless of what it is, the less effective it is, the colder it is,” said Shafer.
MoDOT suggests the public to continue to monitor the forecast and the MoDOT Traveler Map if they plan to drive or travel Saturday. Columbia Public Works advises citizens to stay off of the roads Saturday and try to take care of any obligations Friday before the storm is forecasted to begin.
Boone / Cole / Columbia / Missouri / Snow / Top Stories / Transportation / Travel / Weather / Winter Weather