Public works, road crews busy preparing for icy, wet weather

By Danielle Thomas – bio | email

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Local governments are preparing for the winter weather. Public works crews in several cities spent Thursday checking on storm drains in case of heavy rain.

If it snows, Harrison County road crews said they're ready to keep road conditions as safe as possible for drivers. Workers are prepared to spread sand along bridges if necessary.

"We'll go out and apply the sand on the bridges from approximately a quarter to a half inch thick," said Todd Herrin, Assistant Road Manager. "What that does is it just keeps the ice from forming and gives it basically traction. Bridge decks have a tendency to be pretty slick. We put the sand on there to try to take care of the ice."

Sand isn't the only material crews will use to prevent ice on about 25 bridges.

"What the sand doesn't do, we have another material there to try to absorb the moisture to try to keep it from freezing. Also, we're getting barricades together with the flashing lights on top to inform the people when they get to the bridges they might be icy or sand," Herrin said.

Workers will be checking on driving conditions all during the night, but they say it's still important that motorists slow down.

"Well, everybody is not really used to driving in slippery conditions," said Herrin. "So my advice would be to basically slow down and when you come to a bridge, take extra caution. Because if the weather does come in and it does have icy slush on it, then it will be a lot slicker than normal."

Crews said if the weather gets bad enough, they may start closing bridges if there are alternate routes. Otherwise workers will continue trying to keep roads passable.

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