ArDOT crews preparing for winter storm

Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 6:30 PM CST
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WALNUT RIDGE, Ark. (KAIT) - Road crews in the Natural State are preparing for winter weather that could impact travel on Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.

The system could bring several inches to some spots in the area, but the question remains of how it will affect the roadways.

Brad Smithee, Arkansas Department of Transportation District 10 engineer, said his crews face a challenge as they won’t be able to lay as much road treatment due to the rain washing it away before the snow arrives.

He said no matter the weather, his crews stand ready.

“Just in case the temperature fluctuation is a few degrees off or different, it’s a little colder a little further east than we expect. Just in case if the weather chooses to move a little further south or east and bring more of that snow, we’re ready for that,” he said.

Smithee explained his crews had already begun preparations for the weather, and those preparations would continue until precipitation began to fall.

“Tomorrow, I expect we take some rock salt and, probably in the westernmost areas, treat our hills, treat our curves, and our raised elevated bridges that we know can be problematic during winter weather events,” Smithee said.

He said you’re encouraged to stay at home if road conditions become bad.

“Everybody knows not everybody can do that,” Smithee added. “The safest place to be in a winter weather event when the roads turn bad is at home. If you can at all, that’s certainly the best idea.”

Smithee encouraged everyone to visit before heading out on the roadways Wednesday morning.