Winter weather already creating dangerous driving conditions - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Winter weather already creating dangerous driving conditions

Roads could be harder to drive on when freezing temperatures hit the coast. (Photo source: WLOX News) Roads could be harder to drive on when freezing temperatures hit the coast. (Photo source: WLOX News)
SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) -

Freezing temperatures and winter precipitation are creating dangerous road conditions for drivers in South Mississippi. Emergency crews are responding to multiple crashes on roadways across the coast.

We're told there are several crashes on I-10 in Harrison County. In Pearl River County, emergency management officials are asking people to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary. 

LIVE TRAFFIC CAMERAS: Click here to see the latest road conditions from MDOT

Law enforcement and emergency management agencies continue to keep a close eye on the weather and the roads.

DRIVERS NEED TO USE EXTREME CAUTION ON ELEVATED ROADS AND BRIDGES

Harrison County Emergency Management Agency Director Rupert Lacy urges people to stay off the roads unless necessary. If you have to travel, give yourself extra time and turn on your head lights.

When braking be sure not to slam on brakes to avoid sliding. 

"I-10 and I-110 are elevated. The concern is that they are higher up so the temperature is different. They don't have the ground heating them up," Lacy explained. "We haven't had sunlight in a couple of days. So the ground isn't even as warm as it normally is, and the ground is saturated due to the rain we've had."

With a colder ground and extremely cold temperatures, Lacy said we have a good chance of seeing parts of roadway with black ice, which is a bad combination for your vehicle.

"Your sidewalk could look dry, but tomorrow night when your temperatures drop and there's moisture, you could see black ice," he added.

DRIVERS

Lacy urges motorists to wait until the sun comes up before driving.

"Let the sun come up and let the temperatures gradually come up around 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. before you head out,” Lacy said.

“Inland areas will likely see freezing temperatures once again Saturday night, so always use caution on the roads in the early morning hours,” said Duncan.

Jackson County EMA Director Earl Etheridge said motorists need to use caution on Highways 63, 90 and 613 where they cross the rivers, and also on Highway 614 and Fort Bayou Bridge.

Lacy said the coldest weather and freezing temperatures Saturday morning will be what his office will be monitoring.

"There will be delayed openings across the board," Lacy said. "We'll likely see roads with black ice because of moisture.”

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